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University of British Columbia Library 

Dr. Arley Munson 









Printed in the United States of America 



When my friends ask me : "Why did you leave the 
splendid opportunities of your own country for the 
discomforts and dangers of a far-off pagan land?" I 
feel inclined to make the submissive reply heard so 
frequently from the lips of the meek-voiced women 
of India: "Kismet! Adrushtam! It was my destiny. 
How else should I find peace?" 

It was during my early childhood that, on turning 
the leaves of a mission book, I found an illustration 
representing a Hindu mother throwing her baby into 
the gaping jaws of a crocodile, as a sacrifice to the 
gods; and I asked my mother what the dreadful pic- 
ture meant. When she had explained it to me, I hid 
my tearful face on her shoulder, and, my heart swell- 
ing with sorrow and pity, I resolved to "hurry and 
grow up" that I might go out to India and "save those 
poor little babies." 

In the years that followed I learned the tragedy of 
the Indian woman's existence, and the smoldering 
resolve of my childhood flamed into a mature and 
steady determination to spend a part of my life prac- 
ticing medicine and surgery in India, with the hope 
that by healing the body I might reach the mind and 



heart and lead them, if ever so short a distance, out of 
the darkness of ignorance and vice that surrounded 

My medical college and hospital studies completed, 
I left New York for India. 

On my journey to India and during the five years 
of my life there I kept a fairly accurate record of 
my experiences, from which record the present book is 
largely taken. 

The illustrations are from photographs of the actual 
persons and places mentioned in my story. I avail 
myself of this opportunity to thank Rev. Charles W. 
Posnett of Medak, India, for his cordial and generous 
permission to use the photographs taken in his dis- 

I have touched but lightly on the evangelical side 
of mission life. My effort to rid my patients of phys- 
ical ailments occupied my time so fully that I was 
obliged to resign their spiritual guidance to my thor- 
oughly able and willing colleagues. 

This book, then, apart from rough sketches of 
scenes as they came before me in my travels from 
Bombay to Calcutta, from Kashmir to Tuticorin, is 
simply a glimpse into warmly beating human hearts 
hidden away in the depths of Indian jungle-villages, 
where their "Doctor Mem Sahib" found them, loved 
them, and tried, in her imperfect, human way, to help 

Though at times the thunders of defeat and tragedy 
almost deafened me, rang always high above the 



tumult the clear, sweet note of that happiness promised 
in Mr. Kipling's vision of the future, when "... no 
one shall work for money, and no one shall work for 
fame, But each for the joy of the working ..." 





Bombay ...... 



Life at Sholapur . . . . 



Wayside Sketches . . . . 



The City of Palaces . . . . 









Sholapur Again . . . . . 



Hyderabad .... 



My Indian Home . . . . 



The Rains ..... 



Our Indian Friends 



American Thanksgiving Day in Isdu 

V 59 


Christmas ..... 



Dream Days Among the Himalayas 



Back to the Plains 



We Go A-Touring 



On Horseback and Off 



The Jahtra .... 



Rice Christians .... 



God's Out-of-Doors 



Off to Kashmir .... 



Summer Sightseeing . 



Women of India .... 



Jungle Foes .... 



New Camping Grounds 



Mahorrum ..... 



An April Holiday 







XXIX. To THE Hills Away 
XXX. Darjiling . 
XXXI. Hospital Lights and Shades 
XXXII. Young Hopefuls . 

XXXIII. Penetrating the Wilds 

XXXIV. Fantastic Summer's Heat 
XXXV. Strenuous Times 

XXXVI. The Cholera Terror . 
XXXVII. Farewells . . ,,. 





Dr. Alley Munson Frontispiece 

J^Iedak Dispensary, vaccination day 42 

Indian carpenters at work 60 

String bed of India, the common sleeping cot. . . 60 

In the ^Medak Dispensary 70 

IVIahomedan Madas bringing gratitude oflfering of 

sheep garlanded vnXh. flowers 70 

Dr. Munson operating in Medak Hospital .... 76 

Comer of medical ward, Medak Hospital .... 76 

Dora Chatterjee 86 

Toddy-drawing 124 

Swing bridge of Kashmir 134 

Snake charmers and jugglers 134 

Kashmiri women 138 

Watering the rice-fields 182 

Tree ferns in India 212 

Medak Zevana Hospital, prayer comer, surgical ward 226 

A country cart stopping at Medak Hospital . . . 232 

Medak touring outfit 232 

Boys' playground, Medak 250 

Girls' playgroimd, Medak ' ... 250 

Medak doctor on tour 256 

Medak nurse \'isiting the sick in a palanquin . . . 256 

Sunday Bible Class, Medak 292 




BOMBAY to-morrow morning!" exclaimed 
the captain cheerily as we rose from din- 
ner, and we knew our long voyage was 
ended. Ocean life and ocean friendships had 
been delightful, but that last evening, instead of 
the usual merry gathering on deck, everybody, 
busy with his own thoughts, was strangely quiet. 
At midnight I still gazed out over the water, 
the vast loneliness of the sea sinking into my 
soul. My dream of work in India would soon 
be reality. For years I had heard my little sisters 
of India calling to me to help them, and now I was 
nearly there. The thought almost overwhelmed 
me, for who was I that I should presume to teach 
others how to live! Deep down in my heart, I 
longed — Oh, so desperately! — to turn traitor to 
my ideals and go back home. But this was cow- 
ardly indeed; so, stifling a sigh which was half 



a sob, I strengthened myself with a whispered, 
"No more backward glances! Eastward ho!" 
and went to my stateroom, where I had a com- 
forting good-night chat with Sonubai. 

Sonubai was one of my college mates who was 
traveling with me on her way home to Sholapur. 
In response to the cordial invitation of her par- 
ents, Dr. and Mrs. Keskar (those Brahmans con- 
verted to Christianity who did such noble, self- 
sacrificing work among the sufferers in the recent 
terrible famines and who later became the medi- 
cal superintendents of a Christian orphanage and 
leper asylum at Sholapur), I had decided to make 
my home with them until my plans for work 
should mature. 

When we rose next morning everybody was 
in a fever of excitement, for there before us, a 
horseshoe of purest sapphire blue, lay the harbor 
of Bombay. 

My eyes eagerly scanned every detail: stately 
steamships and other ocean-going craft lay well 
out from the land; tom-tits, curious little sail- 
boats manned by native boatmen, darted here and 
there; and the white shore and green trees af- 
forded a soothing background to the gaudy dis- 
play of color on the pier, where hundreds of the 
Indian men of Bombay in gala raiment — a few 
foreigners and white-clad Englishmen among 


them — had come to welcome our giant ship from 

We had left the ship for the tender and were 
approaching the pier when Sonubai exclaimed 
delightedly, "There's Father!" and in another 
moment Dr. Keskar and Rev. Dr. Karmarkar, 
an Indian Christian of Bombay, were heartily 
greeting us. The customs ordeal ended, we drove 
toward Dr. Karmarkar's home. 

With slow tread and downcast face, women in 
draperies of every hue and texture passed 
through the streets, their jewels almost covering 
face, neck, arms, and legs, and jingling at every 
step. A few of the men were quietly dressed, 
but many would have put a peacock to shame, as, 
in blue coat, magenta waistcoat, red trousers, 
rose-pink turban, and yellow shoes, or in some 
other color scheme quite as varied, they shuf- 
fled along. The whining cry of blind beggars 
in simple loin-cloth pierced the babel that sur- 
rounded us. And there were the babies of the 
city, carried on their mothers' hips or running 
about the streets, their shiny brown skin alone 
clothing their chubby bodies. 

Occasionally an English soldier or civilian in 
khaki or white duck passed through the crowds, 
his trim costume and ruddy Western face 
strangely at variance with the life about him. 



From the din of the crowded, unsavory ba- 
zaar, with its fat shopkeepers, its tiny, open 
shops, and the dusty confusion of its wares, we 
were glad to come into the wide, green Esplanade 
Road. Here the passing throngs were like a 
story-book pageant: English ladies and gentle- 
men in summer habit galloped by on spirited 
horses, or, exquisitely dressed in Hyde Park or 
Fifth Avenue style, drove leisurely along in open 
carriages; military officers in uniform rode reck- 
lessly; a palanquin, closely curtained and con- 
taining some "pride-of-the-harem," was borne 
past, the women servants following on horseback 
and an Indian gentleman — husband or son — can- 
tering by the side of the palanquin, each hand 
holding a rein and the arms flopping negligently ; 
and dark-skinned ayahs in snowy muslins were 
there, in charge of daintily dressed English chil- 

At the Karmarkar house, Mrs. Karmarkar, 
who had taken her medical degree from the same 
college in Philadelphia from which I was gradu- 
ated, met us with warm hospitality, and in the 
evening she and Dr. Karmarkar gave a feast — 
jawan — to all the friends who had arrived that 
day in India. 

The floor was prettily decorated with a design 
in red chalk, while exquisite red roses formed 



the centerpiece. In full evening dress, we sat 
about, Turk-fashion, on bright-colored rugs, and 
ate with our fingers from the banana leaves on 
which the food was served, while garlands of 
pink roses and white jasmine around our necks 
added gaiety to the jolly, informal feast. 
The gentleman who sat beside me taught me the 
table etiquette of the Hindu, Food should be 
eaten with the right hand, only the thumb and 
the first two fingers — even those not below the 
first joint — coming in contact with the food; 
water should be poured from the glass into the 
mouth without touching the lips. That finger 
and glass affair may sound easy. Try it! Al- 
though I enjoyed the Indian food, the meal 
seemed like the old picnic meals of childhood, 
more sweet and spicy things than things substan- 

With teas, dinners, receptions, and services at 
the various mission institutions, the American 
missionaries and Dr. Keskar's friends among the 
Indian Christians filled our time so pleasantly 
that it seemed but a turn of the kaleidoscope be- 
fore our Bombay visit came to an end and we 
were off for Sholapur. 



ALL the way to Sholapur, Sonubai and I 
had our railway coach to ourselves. 
Along each side of the roomy compart- 
ment ran an eight-foot, leather-cushioned seat, 
and above each of these seats hung a wide shelf, 
also leather-cushioned, constituting an "upper 
berth," which could be hooked back against the 
wall when not in use. As there was floor space 
enough between the lower seats and the tiny but 
complete dressing-room to accommodate all our 
trunks and bundles, we had the coolies place our 
baggage inside our own coach. Then, wrapping 
our rugs about us, we stretched ourselves com- 
fortably on the long seats and slept soundly till 
the train rolled into Sholapur. 

At their Orphanage on the outskirts of Shola- 
pur, where, because of the plague in the city, 
the Keskars were camping, we were met by the 
children of the institution, hundreds of bare- 
footed, brown-faced boys and girls, the boys in 
turban, dhoti (draped trousers) and coat of spot- 



less white, the girls with their graceful red sari 
flung loosely over head and shoulders and falling 
in long pleats to the ground. As we approached, 
they burst into a song of joyous greeting — the 
poor lepers joining in from the distance. When, 
with bright smiles of welcome and a lusty, "Sa- 
laam!" the children had finished the song, and 
Sonubai's mother and two younger sisters had 
greeted her with tearful embraces and me with 
courteous warmth, there began one of the strang- 
est, most bewitching dances I had ever seen. A 
company of about twenty small boys divided into 
two lines. With body and limbs moving in per- 
fect rhythm to the sound of their crude casta- 
nets and to the loud beating of a drum, they stood 
first on one foot, then on the other ; whirled round 
and round; wound in and out of the opposite line 
in a graceful series of intertwinings ; sank to a 
sitting posture on their heels; then rose again 
light as air. All this again and again, slowly at 
first, then faster and faster, until the little danc- 
ers, exhausted, dropped laughing to the ground 
amid our loud applause. 

As we passed along, group after group came 
toward us, their leader throwing garlands of pink 
roses and yellow marigolds over our heads, until 
we reached the cool, roofed veranda where we 
listened to a speech of welcome from Dr. Keskar, 



followed by prayers and hymns of gratitude for 
our safe arrival. 

Although I did not understand the vernacular, 
I could easily read in the faces of the little ones 
gathered about me happiness and comfort and a 
sincere love for "Papa" and "Mamma," as they 
call Dr. and Mrs. Keskar. It was hard to realize 
that many of the chubby, happy-faced boys and 
girls gathered about me were the famine children 
of 1899 and 1900, the pathetic little skeletons 
which the press throughout the world so vividly 
described and photographed. 

The greeting ceremonies ended, I was intro- 
duced to Indian home life. 

With unlimited hospitality, the Keskar family 
did all they could to give me pleasure, Mrs. Kes- 
kar personally superintending the preparation of 
English food for me — the Indian curries, hot 
with chilis, were painful to my throat — while 
Guramma, the cook, deftly turned it out from 
pots and pans in use on the mud stove. There 
are no chimneys in Indian village houses, but 
Guramma, laughing and chatting happily over 
her work, seemed not at all inconvenienced by 
the clouds of smoke rolling over her head and 
filling the kitchen, though I could not even pass 
through the room without a violent fit of cough- 



My day began with Suernamala. That im- 
pressive name belonged to my small handmaiden 
who, from morning till night, except during 
school hours, was somewhere close at hand. 
When the morning sun roused me from sleep I 
could see Suernamala's plump figure flitting about 
the room. Observing that I was awake, she 
would bow low in a respectful salaam, and sum- 
mon Bhagu, her assistant (India is a land of 
assistant unto assistant), to help her bring my 
chota hazrai (little breakfast), a simple meal of 
tea and toast and jelly. Frequently, when the 
child was grateful to me for some trifling favor, 
she would stoop and kiss the hem of my gown. 
I tried in vain to break her of this habit, but, in 
spite of all my explanations, she would tearfully 
implore me not to consider her unworthy to touch 
even my clothing, so I submitted with what grace 
I might. 

Most of the day was spent in attending to the 
various ailments of the children, for, soon after 
coming to Sholapur, Sonubai and I had started a 
little dispensary for the Orphanage. 

Then, as twilight came on, we would stroll 
about the compound, feeling like the *Tied Piper 
of Hamelin," for children surrounded us on every 
side and followed in a long stream behind, cling- 



ing to our dresses and fingertips, and chattering 
merrily to each other and to us. 

At night, after the children slept, Sonubai and 
I would sit in low chairs by the little mother's 
side and listen while she sang to us the sweet 
Marathi hymns or narrated, with a pretty mix- 
ture of English and Marathi, the old legends of 
Hindu mythology. 

In the midst of this peaceful existence would 
come the startling sights and sounds of the jun- 
gle, so that for days I was surprised at nothing 
but the lack of a surprise. Now the cry of 
"Sahp!" would ring through the air; some one 
had seen a snake, and the schoolboys would arm 
themselves with heavy sticks and seek out the 
reptile — cobra or python — which had little chance 
to escape. Again, some one would shout that a 
mad dog was in the compound — the life of the 
pariah dog, the homeless, pitiful scavenger of the 
Orient, frequently ends in hydrophobia — and a 
moment later the shrieks of the beast as he was 
clubbed to death would send shivers down my 
spine. Milder surprises were the howls of the 
jackal, filling the night with wild, weird sound; 
a fox dashing through the compound; an owl 
flying into the house; or a stately camel stalking 
slowly along the dusty road, a dark-faced, wild- 
looking man of the desert on its back. 



As a drove of camels passed one day Dr. Kes- 
kar persuaded the driver to give me a ride. The 
camel, not half so pleased as I, grumbled most 
disagreeably while he knelt for the mount. The 
great pack on his back was covered with one of 
our own rugs, the creature emitted more of those 
hideous grunts, and then I held for life to the 
pack-ropes while he slowly rose to his feet. 
When the camel knew that his driver was de- 
termined I should have a ride, he took to me 
more kindly; so, doing my best to balance myself 
and to sway with the dreadful sweeping swing of 
that great hump, I rode with more triumph than 
dignity all around the compound. 

When Christmas came — my first Christmas in 
the tropics — it seemed to me that I was living in 
a dream. The weather was perfect, the sky, an 
intense, dazzling blue, the clouds mere flecks of 
down, and tiny zephyrs, fragrant with the breath 
of roses and lemon-grass, caressed my cheek with 
the soft touch of a baby's hand. Friendly spar- 
rows hopped about the floor or chirped overhead 
among the rafters ; lizards scuttled along the wall 
in the sunshine; tiny squirrels frisked about the 
doorstep, or, half shyly, half impudently, peeped 
in at us. From the windows we could see a round 
Eastern well with a green orchard in the back- 
ground. Little brown boys frolicked under the 



trees or splashed with delight in the pond; goats 
with their kids hopped among the rocks or, stand- 
ing on their hind legs, reached eager mouths to 
the young leaves above them ; emerald green par- 
rakeets skimmed through the air ; and the cooing 
of the jungle doves mingled with the raucous caw- 
ing of a flock of crows in a neighboring tree. 

During Christmas Eve, and all through the 
night, groups of men and boys had come beneath 
our windows singing Christmas carols in the 
good, old-fashioned way; and now on Christmas 
Day, the compound resounded with the song and 
laughter of the children at their games ; even the 
poor lepers seemed full of Christmas spirit; and 
life was good to live. 

The coming of the bangle-man added to the 
pleasure and excitement. Under Mrs. Keskar's 
directions, he gave a pair of the bright-colored 
glass trinkets to each of the schoolgirls, the vain 
little creatures insisting on the tiniest bangles in 
spite of the pain which brought the tears to their 
eyes as the bangle-man coaxed the bangles over 
their hands. As a guest of the house, I also was 
decorated. I refused to be tortured, however, 
and, greatly to the bangle-man's disgust, insisted 
on a fair-sized pair of bangles which slipped eas- 
ily over my hands. 

After the distribution of gifts to the children 



of the Orphanage, the Keskar family and I went 
to the Leper Asylum. Although in a few of the 
poor, doomed lepers no outward sign of the dread 
disease could be detected, most of them had the 
bleared eyes, and seamed, swollen features of ad- 
vanced leprosy, and many had neither fingers nor 

For the time being they had lost the hopeless 
look which, sooner or later, comes into the eyes 
of lepers, and delightedly they grasped the treas- 
ures held out to them, responding with a loud 
"Tankoo!" and a graceful salaam. Three-year- 
old Rubi did her best, but could only wave her 
hand in an uncertain way and piece out the ges- 
ture with a dimpling smile. I shuddered to think 
of the wretched fate of that bright babe. Even 
then she showed the telltale spots! 

The presents given, the lepers sang their na- 
tive songs for us with drum and castanet accom- 
paniment, and then we returned to the Orphan- 
age and the Christmas dinner. 

Poolaii (rice and goat-meat boiled together) 
takes the place of our turkey at home, and the 
children's eyes glistened as, seated on the ground 
in perfect content, they dipped their fingers again 
and again into the heaped-up plates, or drank 
long draughts of water from their tin cups. 

Baby Assiabai was too young for the poolau, 


but her coos and gurgles showed that she also 
enjoyed her Christmas. Baby Assiabai repre- 
sents one of Dr. Keskar's medical triumphs. A 
few months before Christmas, Dr. Keskar found 
her, a tiny babe on the very verge of starvation, 
in a corner of a village hut. Lean, hungry-eyed 
rats gnawed greedily at her fingers and toes, and, 
close by, five dead bodies, plague-stricken, lay 
huddled. The doctor brought the wailing child 
to his Orphanage and put her in charge of a fos- 
ter-mother who tenderly nursed her back to life. 
The wounds of the hands and feet soo» healed, 
the wasted form rounded out, and dimples played 
in the plump cheeks as she laughed at our at- 
tempts to amuse her. 

Our one sadness of the Christmas-time was to 
find that Kanku had the leprosy. Kanku, a child 
of South India and a stranger indeed among our 
Marathis, often wept bitterly over the thought- 
less teasing of the other children about her South 
country language and customs; the only happi- 
ness of her timid, home-loving Indian heart was 
to stand outside the lepers' inclosure and talk 
with two or three leper girls who were from her 
own district in the South. Then, on Christmas 
Day, we found in Kanku unmistakable signs of 
leprosy and gently told her so with a shrinking 
dread of her misery at the bitter truth. To our 



surprise, Kanku laughed joyfully, ''Now I can 
be with my own people," and rushed away to her 
little countrywomen in the Lepers' Asylum. 

New Year's Day was celebrated by dining with 
a prominent Brahman family of Sholapur. The 
invitation surprised me, but Dr. Keskar explained 
that the Brahman gentleman who had sent the 
invitation was less orthodox in thought than 
Brahmans usually are; that he had been to Eng- 
land and America, thereby breaking his caste; 
but that he dressed in costume, observed the rites, 
and had duly performed all the ceremonies of 
purification, one of which is the eating and drink- 
ing of the five products, including the excretions, 
of the cow; so he had been received with no ques- 
tion among his people. The Brahman's wife 
greeted us shyly, bringing all the children to see 
us; but these did not sit with us at the meal, for 
Brahman women eat after the men have finished, 
the wife eating of the husband's leavings. There 
were several Hindu guests present, and we sat 
on the floor. Once, instead of the food being 
placed by my side, I thoughtlessly took it from 
the hand of the waiter, thus defiling the poor 
fellow, who was instantly compelled to take a 
purifying bath. 

The eldest son of the family, a grown man, 
had appeared at the table in his white dhoti and 



shirt, and it was explained to me that the shirt 
was in deference to my feeHngs, for it is the 
habit of the Brahmans to dine in the dhoti alone. 

Another curious custom which they observed 
was the surrounding of each leaf plate with a 
ring of water, and the placing of a morsel of 
food on the floor as an offering to the gods. This 
is the Hindu ''grace." 

Bidding the women good-by, in their own 
apartment, we joined the men in the drawing- 
room, chatted a while, and started homeward. 

Squatting on his flat board seat our driver 
urged on the bullocks by tickling them with his 
toes, or twisting their tails, and all through the 
crowded bazaar his cry rang out frequently : "A, 
gardi wallah, bahdsooday! (O, driver of the ve- 
hicle, to the side!)" 

A holy beggar — fakir — went chanting along 
as we passed, his flowing, unkempt hair and al- 
most naked body proclaiming his profession. 

Farther on, two Hindu gentlemen, having 
greeted each other, squatted down on the side- 
walk for a cozy chat, sitting on their heels and 
bearing their whole weight on their toes. 

As we passed the old fort we stopped to ex- 
plore the interior, full of relics of ancient Hindu 
and Mohammedan life. I heard the legend of the 
woman who, with her unborn babe, was buried 



alive under the tower, as a religious sacrifice. I 
saw the crude, red-painted Kali, goddess of de- 
struction, who stands with head bent forward. 
It is said that she swore no Englishman should 
ever set foot in the fort; and, when the English 
conquered and entered, the goddess bowed her 
head in shame and sadness, and has never raised 
it since. In the temple of the fort a very differ- 
ent and proud little Kali is decked in richest gold 
and silver and jewels, each of her eyes being a 
costly diamond. 

On the outskirts of Sholapur we passed the 
relief tents, where people had fled from the 
plague. In Sholapur, a town of about seventy- 
five thousand inhabitants, thirty-six was at that 
time the average daily mortality, and the number 
steadily increased until the hot season. 

So the days passed until, despite the cordial 
urging of the Sholapur people that I remain with 
them longer, I felt that I must begin my work in 
India. As the Government Surgeon of Sholapur 
advised me to go to Calcutta to see Sir Denzil 
Ibbetson, President of the Council, about a hos- 
pital appointment, I started on my journey across 
the whole breadth of India. 



SUERNAMALA packed my valise with a 
few necessaries and many of her own 
ready tears, and, with the loud "Salaam !" 
of the children ringing through the air, I rattled 
away in the dust of the country road. 

At one of the stations I climbed down from the 
train to observe more closely the scenes about me. 

At all large railway stations a fenced-off yard 
is allotted to the third-class passengers, who, not 
having any idea of the time their train will start, 
or of the value of time in general, bring their 
blankets and other baggage the night before they 
wish to begin their journey and camp out in the 
station yard. 

As our train stopped these fenced-in, would-be 
passengers crowded close to the gate. The guard 
let them out and they scurried for the third-class 
coaches. Pushing, pulling, crowding, huddling, 
shouting, they climbed aboard the train, and only 
when they had packed every coach to the limit of 
its capacity (the men in separate compartments 



from the women) did they seem contented. 
Gurgling hookahs, cigarettes, and small pipes 
made from leaves were produced (the women of 
India as well as the men smoke from early child- 
hood), and, as the smoke issued forth in clouds, 
the tones sank to intermittent murmurs, and all 
was peace. 

A young English soldier with a fair, good- 
humored face, in khaki uniform and with dark 
soldier cap set jauntily on one side of his head, 
was putting his Eurasian family into a third-class 
coach marked *'For European Females." The 
coolie asked him a question and he replied with 
an impatient gesture: "Oh, go t'ell!" Then, see- 
ing me, he added apologetically: "Beg pardon, 
Ma'am! But these fellahs, 'ow they do torment 

I had started again to board the train when I 
almost fancied I was having "visions," for I saw 
before me, among the motley Indian crowd, a 
young man in whose high-bred features, athletic 
air, natty gray suit, and Panama hat something 
spoke plainly of American university life. At 
the same moment he saw me and stopped short 
in his walk, staring hard. Then, flushing with 
pleasure, he rushed up to me. 

"I beg your pardon, but you're a New Yorker, 
aren't you ?" 



"Yes; how did you know?" 

"Why, that's easy; you've Broadway written 
all over you. I tell you, I'm glad to see you ! A 
fellow gets awfully lonesome in this blasted coun- 

There was time for no more. The train bell 
rang for starting and I stepped into the coach, 
smiling a good-by to a homesick, boyish face. 

Soon the Vindhya Mountains shut us in on 
every side, those wonderful piles of granite and 
syenite variously shaped as if, in ages past, giants 
must have hurled into the air immense boulders 
which fell on the flattened mountain tops in all 
sorts of positions until they took on the semblance 
of a great city standing strongly outlined against 
the heavens. I could see five of the boulders 
piled one on top of the other so delicately bal- 
anced that it seemed as if a child's hand could 
send them crashing to the valley below. 

At one point the plain lay hundreds of feet be- 
low the track and the train passed through tun- 
nel after tunnel. When I had counted twenty- 
five I thought of the old lady traveling through 
the Rocky Mountains who wondered what would 
happen "if the train should miss any of those 

Breaking my journey most pleasantly at Bhan- 
dara, where I spent a day or two at the hospitable 



home of Rao Sahib Rangrao, whose wife is Mrs. 
Keskar's sister, I then journeyed onward in com- 
pany with Babu Rangrao, the eldest son of the 
house, who was on his way to the Calcutta Medi- 
cal College, of which he was a student, and with 
Manakbai, the eldest daughter, returning, after 
her vacation, to the Calcutta High School. 

In Bengal I was, for the first time, in the 
tropics of my dreams — moist and warm and lux- 
uriant with bright-colored vegetation. Mud huts 
and huts of straw nestled among giant palm trees, 
every hut surrounded by its own garden of gay 
flowers. It lent a thrill to the scene to know 
that in the great forests we were passing the 
royal Bengal tiger stalked the deer and the wild 
elephant roamed in lordly freedom. Scores of 
the jungle tales I had heard in my childhood 
thronged upon me and held mad revel in my 



ACCORDING to Dr. Keskar's written re- 
quest his friend Babu Atul Nag met me 
in Calcutta and we drove across the 
wonderful pontoon bridge over the Hooghly to 
the London Mission, where it had been arranged 
that I should make my home during my stay in 
the city. 

When, during a pleasant interview next morn- 
ing with Sir Denzil Ibbetson, he explained that 
in a government post the physician is not allowed 
to teach Christianity, I immediately gave up all 
thought of trying to obtain such a position, and 
decided to join some mission in need of medical 

The charm of the ''City of Palaces" held me a 
few days longer. Every afternoon we had a de- 
lightful drive along the broad Esplanade, through 
the stately Chowringhee Road, or about the mag- 
nificent public gardens. 

Very noticeable was the white, wan look of 
every European I met in Calcutta, and the atti- 


tude of absolute ease assumed by them, the leis- 
urely stroll of the pedestrian, the listless air of 
the gentlemen in carriages as they idly turned the 
sheets of newspapers, and the languid smile of 
the ladies as they passed each other in their even- 
ing drive. 

The Bengalese appeared to me the finest look- 
ing Indian people I had seen, with their large, 
dark, lustrous eyes and European features, a 
bright-colored silk scarf thrown across the chest 
of the men and depending from the left shoulder 
adding a charming grace to their costume. The 
one defect in their appearance was the greasy 
look imparted by the generous quantities of cocoa- 
nut oil applied to their hair, which, unlike all the 
other peoples of India, they wear uncovered. 

A Bengali wedding feast occupied one evening 
of our time. The Mission ladies and I, conducted 
by a servant with a lantern, groped our way 
through dark, narrow alleys, walking carefully 
to avoid the sewage gutters on both sides of the 
path, until we came to the low-roofed mud house 
of the bride's parents. Stooping low to enter the 
doorway, we passed through a dimly lighted 
room, stepping over dozens of naked, sleeping 
babies, left there while their parents enjoyed the 
festivities, and came out on the veranda of the 
courtyard, where the merriment was at its height. 



The wedding- ceremony was ended and the feast 
was in progress. We were smilingly greeted by 
the bride's mother, and, with a group of learned 
Babus — lawyers, clergymen, professors — we sat 
on the floor of the rug-covered veranda, eating 
with our fingers the delicious curry, rice, and 
sweetmeats placed before us, and watching the 
gaiety of the wedding guests. 

Amid the loud report of firecrackers, the sput- 
ter and flare of Roman candles, and the bright 
light of red fire matches, young boys danced and 
frolicked about the courtyard to the music of 
an Indian band, and the shining, dark eyes and 
gorgeous costumes of the scores of guests 
crowded on the veranda lent added brilliance to 
the scene. 

The bricle herself, a slim, pretty girl of four- 
teen, surpassed all the others in splendor of cos- 
tume. Her sari of pink brocaded silk was draped 
over an English blouse of red velvet and rainbow 
silk, whose name describes its color ; while a mas- 
sive silver ornament in her hair, two immense 
gold earrings in each ear, two or three gold and 
silver necklaces, several silver bracelets, gold 
finger rings galore, and silver toe rings and ank- 
lets helped in the bewildering display of light and 
color which she presented. 



ONE of the dreams of my life had been to 
see the Taj Mahal at Agra, and I took 
the opportunity to visit Agra before my 
return to Sholapur, stopping on the way at Be- 
nares, that "holy" city, supposed to rest on the 
point of Siva's trident and which for nearly three 
thousand years has been the center of Hindu 
learning and religious life. 

At the station in Benares, an old Mahomedan 
guide with flowing magenta beard — the law de- 
nies an "old" man a license as a guide, hence the 
clever artfulness of the magenta color — entered 
my service and, knowing well what the Sahib-log 
(English people) wish to see, conducted me at 
once to the Ganges. There, from my comfortable 
seat on the deck of a boat, which muscular coolies 
rowed slowly up and down, I saw the amazing 
sights of that wonderful old city. 

As we passed the Burning Ghat, three corpses 
were burning, each on a fagot pile three or four 
feet high, while the mourners sat on one side 



v/aiting to throw the ashes into the river, thus ob- 
taining for their beloved dead the surety of heav- 
en. A white-shrouded figure lay on the edge of 
the bank with the water lapping over it, and an- 
other was evidently undergoing preparations for 
burning. Less than a century ago that Burning 
Ghat had been the favorite place for suttee, when 
the dead went not alone to paradise. 

"Hindus thinking va-a-ary good to die in Be- 
nares," remarked my guide, "but it being va-a-ary 

Judging from the appearance of the crafty- 
eyed priests and the loathsome fakirs, I could 
well believe that, once in their clutches, it would 
be difficult to escape, dead or alive, without pay- 
ing heavy ransom. 

From the river we walked to the various tem- 
ples. As we passed the devotees, who were pros- 
trating themselves before their idols, they drew 
their garments aside that they might not be pol- 
luted by our touch; and one old woman snarled 
savagely as my dress almost brushed against her. 



IT was hot noonday when I arrived at Agra, 
the ancient capital of Akbar and of Shah 
Jehan. Just as at Benares, I found an old 
Mahomedan guide with a magenta beard; and 
we went immediately to the palace fort. There 
we wandered through a maze of rooms and courts 
and terraces and pavilions so immense and so 
gorgeously decorated that I was glad to come 
to the Pearl Mosque and feel the gentle influence 
on my spirit of the beauty, the purity, the solem- 
nity of that matchless room of prayer. 

From the marble terrace where Shah Jehan, 
grandest of all the Grand Moguls, used to go at 
sunset to gaze on the Taj Mahal and dream of the 
lovely woman who had made life for him a para- 
dise on earth, I had my first glimpse of the Taj. 
Its great white dome and golden crescent shone 
through the trees, luring my mind toward the 
treat in store for me. 

When the sun had passed the zenith I left the 
hotel for the Taj and walked the two miles alone, 



for I wanted no magenta-bearded guide to thrust 
his grotesque Urdu-English between me and this 
highest expression in the builders' art of man's 
love for woman. 

In imagination let me lead all you who are 
lovers of the beautiful through the splendid gate- 
way into the gardens of the Taj, that you may 
feast your own eyes on the glories therein! 

Straight before you, but nearly a quarter of a 
mile away, gleams the cenotaph of the Begum 
Arjamund, so pure and beautiful that you stop 
for a moment to make sure it is of earth. It 
stands at the end of a long channel of sparkling 
water, running the whole length of the garden 
and constantly rippled by the series of tiny foun- 
tains it contains, each fountain throwing up a 
single spray. 

On either side of the water is a row of Italian 
cypresses and, exactly halfway along, a marble 
terrace with garden seats tempts you to rest and 
gaze and dream, while all about you in every 
direction stretch the delectable gardens. Could 
even the Taj itself have a nobler setting than 
these well-ordered groves? The giant banyan 
spreads forth its branches and hanging roots; 
the stately palm tree reaches toward the heavens ; 
and our familiar friends, the roses and the jas- 
mine, clamber freely about among the rarest of 



trees and shrubs and flowers brought from far 
away to grace the scene; butterflies of extraor- 
dinary brilliance flutter among the flowers ; while 
wee, striped squirrels play hide-and-seek among 
the trees and rocks; scarlet birds and birds of 
blue and of green form bits of darting color in 
the foliage; gorgeous peacocks sweep the soft 
grass and flash their bejeweled plumage in the 
sun; and the gladsome trill of the biilbid — India's 
thrush — fills your very soul with melody. 

Passing on down the avenue of cypresses we 
draw nearer and nearer the mausoleum until it 
stands directly in front of us. From afar it was 
beautiful, but now, on closer inspection, it seems 
so exquisite that it might have been wrought 
from the frostwork on your winter window pane, 
flecked here and there with ethereal sunrise 
color. Clear-cut against the blue, blue sky 
it rises in all its peerless grace, and it is long 
before we can tear ourselves away from its fas- 
cination to visit the interior. 

We enter the doorway and stand in a silent, 
softly lighted chamber. Delicately traced in the 
fairy mesh of the marble screen inclosing the 
tombs, a line of Arabic lettering tells us that "The 
Exalted of the Palace lies here," and that "Allah 
alone is powerful." 

The dome has an echo unrivaled in strength 


and purity throughout the world. With clear, 
rich voice the grave old Mahomedan caretaker 
strikes a few musical notes and, hark! the echo 
catches and transforms the soimd into harmony, 
swelling, rapturous, which rolls on and on in 
lingering sweetness, until we involuntarily look 
up to see if some golden-throated choir be hidden 



SHOLAPUR again! 
Mrs. Keskar met me at the station with 
a beaming welcome, the servants hurried 
my baggage into the tonga, and we rode home 
together in the cool morning air. 

As I entered the compound all the children, 
lined up to greet me, sang in chorus their favorite 
song of welcome : 

"Salaam! Salaam! Salaam! We offer you our 
greeting. Peace! May Jesus the Saviour bless 
you and with love and kindness daily watch over 
you ! Joyfully we offer you our greeting. Peace ! 

I had been in Sholapur but a few days when a 
dark cloud settled over the compound. In the 
city the plague had mown down its victims with 
ever-increasing fury and now it came to our own 
compound. A sudden high fever attacked one of 
our baby boys, and, on close examination, we 
found a slight swelling under the child's right 
arm. In spite of every effort to save him he lived 



but a few hours. As he had slept in our room 
with his mother for several nights we carefully 
disinfected everything. Our people were panic- 
stricken; orders were given the cook to prepare 
meals in the open air; the children slept outside 
the buildings; and all precautions were taken to 
prevent the spread of the plague. Fortunately 
for us the rigid isolation and disinfection ob- 
served by Dr. Keskar saved our people almost 
entirely from the terrible epidemic, and it was but 
a short time before the immediate danger had 
passed away. 


RESPONDING to an invitation from Mrs, 
George Nundy, wife of an Indian Doc- 
tor of Laws at Hyderabad, Deccan, I 
went to Hyderabad and spent a happy week at 
the beautiful home of the Nundys. There were 
interesting drives in the city, merry frolics with 
the children, tennis on the court, quiet walks in 
the moonlight, and several social festivities at 
the homes of the American missionaries at Se- 
cunderabad, a neighboring city, and of British 
and Indian Government people at Hyderabad. 

In Hyderabad, you feel that you have stepped 
into the "Arabian Nights." The shining domes 
of great mosques and tombs, and the beautiful 
palaces of His Highness, the Nizam, rise above 
the blue and red and green and yellow houses of 
the city, whose roofs seem almost to meet over 
the narrow thoroughfares; a motley crowd of 
loud-voiced men and women shuffle slowly along 
in rainbow costumes ; and scarlet and gold palan- 
quins with curtains drawn close, indicating femi- 



nine occupancy, are borne past on the shoulders 
of coolies, who trot along at an even gait, chant- 
ing the "Palanquin Song" : 

"Ho, ho, hung! 
Go ah gung ! 
Ho, ho, hi, hogan!" 

Splendid equipages roll by, the gorgeous livery 
of the outriders showing that they belong to the 
establishment of some wealthy Nabob; hump- 
shouldered bullocks no bigger than Shetland 
ponies sturdily draw along their little two- 
wheeled carts; Arab horses in gay trappings, 
bearing lightly on their backs fierce men of the 
North armed with murderous looking weapons, 
dash through the throng clearing a wide path 
before them; camels with long-robed Bedouin 
riders pad through the streets; elephants trudge 
ponderously on their way with fringed and gilded 
howdahs on their backs and the voice of the ma- 
hout in their ears, or swing with pendulous mo- 
tion behind the fence of their Fel-Khana (the 
"livery-stable" for the hundreds of Hyderabad 
elephants) ; and the air of the whole city is pen- 
etrant with the stale, sweet, oppressive odor of 
the Eastern bazaar. 

Through the heart of the city rolls the wide 
river Musah until it comes out under the long 
Bund, the fashionable driveway of the place. On 



the outskirts of Hyderabad many large, white 
mansions, such as the Nundy residence, stand 
back from the highway amid a paradise of bloom; 
and huge guns on the crest of the hill, booming 
forth the hours as they pass, give the finishing 
touch to this wonderful old city. 

The ancient Golconda fort and tombs and the 
famous diamond mines where the Koh-i-noor 
was found, and where Sindbad the Sailor, hold- 
ing fast to the diamond-encrusted meat, was 
borne to safety by the roc, are a few miles out of 
Hyderabad, and, with the Nundys, we drove over 
to see them. 

We reveled in the delicious coolness of the 
gentle Golconda hills, where the Nizam's court 
finds a pleasant summer retreat; marveled over 
the stonework of the fort and its underground 
passages centuries old; and, from the king's 
throne on the summit, had a fine view of the sur- 
rounding country. Then down we went to see 
the tombs, of which there are fifteen or twenty 
scattered over the wide plain, several of them 
very large and very beautiful. 

My stay in Hyderabad was ended and I was 
having a thoroughly enjoyable visit with Dr. Ida 
Faye Levering of Secunderabad when news came 
that the Wesleyan Mission at Medak, sixty miles 
from Hyderabad, was sadly in need of a physi- 



cian, and that they would Hke me to take the 
work. Miss Harris and Miss Posnett, mission- 
aries from the Medak Mission, came to Secunder- 
abad to meet me, and, when I learned from them 
that the medical superintendent of their hospital 
was obliged to go to England, leaving a district 
of five hundred square miles without a single 
qualified physician, the great need appealed to 
me, and I decided then and there to go to Medak. 


MY life at the Keskar Orphanage was 

The farewell was a time of grief 
and hurry, but at last I tore myself from the arms 
of the dear children and ran to the waiting tonga. 

On the way to Medak several zenana ladies 
traveled with me. As they walked from their 
covered carriage to the train they seemed a line 
of shrouded ghosts, for all wore the bhoiirka, 
a long, full, white cotton cloak reaching to the 
ankles, with hood covering the entire head in- 
cluding the face, leaving only an embroidered slit 
for the eyes. In the railway carriage, safe from 
male observation, they removed their "shrouds," 
and, behold! Silks and velvets of cream, dove- 
color, heliotrope, green, pink, blue, magenta, 
orange, and yellow, with gold and silver em- 
broideries and ornaments, and precious jewels 
flashing a thousand light rays into my eyes, the 
heavy Eastern perfume pervading everything. 

At Akanapett, the nearest station to the vil- 


lage of Medak, twelve miles farther on, Miss 
Harris met me. Breaking our journey by stay- 
ing for tlie night at a nearby district dispensary 
of the Mission in the village of Ramyanpett, we 
started next morning in a bullock tonga for Me- 

The big white bullocks trotted along at a good 
pace over the rough country road through a land- 
scape of rude, desolate charm. In former days 
this road was checked on the map of the Thugs as 
a place suited for their work. Nowadays a 
police thana marks the way every few miles along 
the Ramyanpett road to Medak, and there is little 
danger from savage men, though savage beasts 
still lurk in the deep woods and among the huge 
boulders and thick underbrush. Tiger, leopard, 
bear, or wolf frequently makes a night attack on 
the farmer's stock; and Miss Harris pointed out 
the lake where they drink. At that moment a 
colony of huge, black-faced, gray monkeys swung 
from a tree near the road to another and another 
at a prudent distance from us; but one mother 
monkey, too proud of her hairless, grimacing 
baby to lose such a chance of displaying his 
charms, climbed down from the trees, seated her- 
self on a roadside rock, with legs hanging in 
front of her in a grotesquely human attitude, and 
clasped her offspring to her breast, her expression 



saying plainly: "Saw you ever s.uch another?" 
We never had ! 

We passed the Dhobi's (washermen's) Stream, 
and there were the dhobis at work. Each dhobi 
selects a flat rock, places it in the stream, dips 
the clothes in the water, and slaps them vigor- 
ously up and down on the rock. This process is 
repeated until the clothes are clean ; they are then 
wrung out and spread on bushes by the water 
side to dry in the hot sun. A careful folding 
serves very well for ironing, for the Indian 
clothes are only long, plain pieces of thin ma- 

A heap of boulders striped with red and white 
chalk marked a "holy place" of the Hindus; and 
almost at the end of our journey we passed the 
pathetic little Christian cemetery, its mounds 
leveled and protected with great flat stones from 
the ravages of jackal or hyena. 

We reached the Mission settlement near the 
village of Medak just at the "dust hour" — the 
name the Indians give to the hour of sunset when 
the flocks and herds trailing homeward fill the 
air with such thick, white clouds of dust that a 
fog appears to have settled over the landscape — 
and passed directly from the maidan into the big 
white carriage gates of my new home in India. 

As we entered the gates, the Indian school 


children of the Mission came running with smile 
and salaam to welcome us. The English people 
of the settlement, of whom there were only eight 
or ten, met us with more dignity, but with no less 

The village of Medak, like the city of Hyder- 
abad, is in the district of Hyderabad. This entire 
district — larger than the states of New York and 
Pennsylvania put together, and consisting of 
eleven and a half million inhabitants — is known 
as the "Nizam's Dominions," and is under the 
control of the Nizam of Hyderabad, a Mussel- 
man who, except the Sultan of Turkey, is the 
most powerful Moslem ruler in the world. Edu- 
cated in England, the Nizam, although oriental 
in many ways, has broad, advanced ideas, and is 
loved and honored by the strange conglomeration 
of peoples that make up his subjects. 

Indian rulers such as the Nizam have only 
limited power in their kingdoms. Without the 
consent of the British Government they cannot 
declare war or peace nor enter into agreements 
with other states, although they retain a certain 
military force of their own. In the case of the 
Nizam's Dominions, however, no European but 
the British Resident may reside in the state with- 
out special permission of the Nizam; and there 

40 © 


is no British interference in the government ex- 
cept in case of excessive misrule. 

Our Mission compound stands on high ground 
and is surrounded by a lonely, wildly beautiful 
landscape. On three sides, the maidan stretches 
off into the distance, its monotony broken here 
and there by rock or tree. Down below and just 
in front lies a placid blue lake where white and 
yellow lotus lilies float. Noble trees line the 
banks of the lake, the densely shadowing mango 
and banyan, the tamarind whose green, lacey fo- 
liage would delight the heart of a Corot, and the 
majestic date-palm towering high above them all 
against a sky shimmering with its intense blue 
and gold. Beyond are rice fields, more vividly 
green than the young rye of New England ; and 
then, straight up for three or four hundred feet, 
rises a hill with immense boulders tumbled all 
over it, these boulders and the tall grass sur- 
rounding them sheltering hundreds of beasts of 
prey. The ruins of a stone fort and temple cen- 
turies old crown the summit of the hill, and at 
its foot are the little mud houses of Medak with 
a few structures of greater pretensions. 

With striking distinctness in the midst of this 
scene stand out the white, well-constructed build- 
ings of the Mission compound, set in the midst 
of pleasant, fertile gardens and fields. 



In the large and comfortable bungalows each 
of us had a suite of two rooms, shared by the 
sparrows and bats which built their nests on a 
ledge just beneath the high ceiling of white- 
washed canvas, so that you almost felt you were 
camping out, the noise and dirt of the winged in- 
truders adding to the realism. 

The gardens were an entrancing mass of sweet- 
scented bloom and blazing color — red, orange, 
yellow, purple — with enough cool green and white 
to soften the beauty and add to it, while bright- 
plumaged birds and birds of somber hue called 
and sang everywhere and over the entrance gate- 
way arched two pipal trees which rustled cease- 
lessly with a sound like gentle rain falling on the 
glistening leaves, deep green and silver lined. 
The pipal tree is the sacred tree of India, the bo- 
tree under which Buddha meditated, and under 
whose shade it is said no lie can be told. 

My Indian nurses proved to be bright, clean, 
helpful young women, but Abbishakamma, chief 
compounder and chief Bible-woman, far sur- 
passed them. Her wavy gray hair, which no 
amount of cocoanut oil would compel to smooth- 
ness, her dimples, and her merry brown eyes 
gave her a pleasing comeliness ; while her general 
ability, her kindly cheerfulness, her never-failing 
loyalty, and her familiarity with the English 



language and with seven or eight of the In- 
dian languages made her an invaluable assistant. 

During prayer-service one morning, as Abbish- 
akamma sat cross-legged on a large rug with a 
group of patients gathered about her, she talked 
to them with so much feeling and they listened 
with such unusual attention that I asked Miss 
Wigfield what the Bible-woman was telling 

"That is Abbishakamma's favorite tale," re- 
plied Miss Wigfield. "It is of Elizabeth and her 
joy over her son. That one story, as Abbisha- 
kamma tells it, has brought us more patients, and 
has given the patients more faith in the Christian 
religion, than any other story in the Bible; for 
the supreme desire of every Indian woman is to 
have a son ; and they would be glad indeed to wor- 
ship any god who could grant them that desire." 

India's need would appeal to a heart of stone. 
Some of the poor creatures who came to us for 
help had traveled for a week in a springless road- 
cart; others had walked sixty miles in the broil- 
ing sun. And the childlike attitude of the peo- 
ple toward us was pathetic. A dear old coolie 
woman said one night in the prayer meeting: 
"Oh, God, the white people have come to us from 
over the sea. They have given us much and 
helped us much. Give them strength to help us 



more !" They either feared us and tried to avoid 
us altogether, or they reverenced us as gods who 
held absolute power of life and death over them. 
I could stand being called their "grandmother," 
their "queen," or their "goddess," but when one 
of them would rub her forehead on my dusty 
shoes with the cry : "I am your slave ; I kiss your 
feet!" I usually had an impulse almost irresist- 
ible to put one foot on her neck and fold my arms 
with a superior glance upward like the Roman 
gladiator. Again, when one buried her head in 
my solar plexus I felt that Tmust follow the ex- 
ample of the babies at home under like circum- 
stances by squealing and grabbing a wisp of her 
hair. I knew, however, that this was but the ori- 
ental manner and meant much the same as a sim- 
ple handshake in America. 

I imagine that the strong races which swept 
down from the North to war against the people 
of Hyderabad District found them an easy con- 

In appearance they are small and delicately 
built, especially the women, with brown skin and 
finely cut features, and their dress and general 
customs are those of the other Hindus of India. 

The religion of the Dravidians, who originally 
possessed the Hyderabad country, was an almost 
unmixed form of devil worship; but now, the 



religion of the Deccan folk, their descendants, 
who call themselves Hindus, is a combination of 
devil worship, Hinduism and Buddhism. 

As to character and conduct, the people have 
inherited docility, subtlety, timidity, and an at- 
tractive gentleness. In brief, if you will imagine 
the exact opposite of a typical American of the 
United States, you will have the East Indian as 
he appeared to me. The more I saw of India, 
the more I was convinced that 

. . . East is East and West is West, and never 

the twain shall meet, 
Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God's great 

Judgment Seat. 

Fortunately for us and for them we do not 
expect them to become like us in the unimportant 
details. We do, however, want them to be not 
beasts of the field, but men. 



THE rains were late that first year at Me- 
dak and the peasants said that a hun- 
dred people must be kidnapped and 
killed and their blood allowed to float down the 
river to appease Gunga, goddess of rain. When 
the blood should reach a certain point, the anger 
of the goddess would depart and the rains would 
break. The attempt to secure the hundred people 
for the sacrifice threw the district into terror. 
Nobody went out alone after dark; and when, 
one night, a strange man came up and caught the 
hand of one of our schoolgirls who had wan- 
dered a short distance from the others out on the 
rnaidan, all the compound thought she escaped 
being a victim only through her screams, which 
immediately brought our coolies to the rescue. 

Because of this lack of rain, the rice crop suf- 
fered and the people were heavy-hearted. Every 
evening and far into the night we could hear the 
unceasing song of the village women as they wor- 
shiped their gods, the monotonous hand-clapping 



and chanting, "Send us rain! Send us rain!" 
But at last the rainy season came. It was 
necessary to protect our shoes and other articles 
of leather from the heavy mold which daily 
formed upon them, as well as from the white ants 
which worked their devastation at all times of 
year. Once, on returning from a three days' ab- 
sence, I found the clay trail of the white ants on 
my best medical case, and, M^hen I investigated, 
a long strip of its leather tore off and crumbled 
in my hand. 

Other entomological specimens come with the 
rains. The mantis, green in color and two or 
three times as big as a grasshopper, looks like 
four animated leaves fastened together by the 
stems. Because of its habit of standing on its 
hind leaves and folding its front leaves together 
as if in prayer, it is called, "the praying one." 
Another, the "stick insect," measuring some three 
inches from tip to tip, and having three pairs of 
legs, I have frequently mistaken for a few wisps 
of dried grass, until, on brushing it away, I 
have been astonished to see it pick itself up and 
walk off. The locusts, reddish-brown with pink 
gauzy wings, are beautiful, a swarm of them 
having the appearance of a rose-pink cloud sail- 
ing through the air. But they are frightfully 
destructive, sometimes wreaking famine-produc- 



ing havoc among the crops. This is easily under- 
stood when it is known that an army of locusts 
was at one time measured and found to be fifty 
miles wide, half a mile from front to rear, eighty 
feet high, and swarming densely. 

It was after a hard shower that I saw from the 
dispensary door some animals hopping about in 
the wet road. At first glance I thought them wild 
hares, but on closer inspection found them to 
be frogs, the biggest I had ever seen. 

"Yes," said the Indian nurses, awestruck, 
"every year they rain down from the sky." 

The rain and wind of a fierce storm dulled 
all minor sounds when one midnight a cry, 
"Thieves !" woke everybody in the compound, and 
in less time than it takes to tell it we were flying 
hither and thither with lights and sticks and guns. 

A burglar had broken into the hospital and 
stolen the head nurse's money and most of her 
clothes. He had rifled the storerooms throughout 
the compound, getting away with heavy booty. 
Afterward we learned that several of us had nar- 
rowly escaped death. The thief confessed in 
court that he had for several seconds bent over 
the sleeping form of the head nurse, prepared 
to stab her should she wake ; and that, when Miss 
Posnett and I were searching for him in the hos- 
pital garden, we had come so near him at one 



time that he held his dagger prepared to kill us 
should we advance another step in his direction. 

When the matter of the burglary was reported 
to the police of Medak, they, as usual, sat down 
apathetically, remarking, in regard to the matter, 
"What can we do?" But not so Mr. Hankin, 
their superintendent, an Englishman and one of 
the most competent police officials in India. When 
he saw no effort was made to find the culprit, 
he commanded that the salary of every one of 
his subordinates be withheld until the thief should 
be found. Instantly they set to work and within 
a few days the criminal was lodged in jail. 

We were told that the burglar underwent the 
"tortures" before he would confess. 

These tortures are worthy of the genius of the 
American Indian in that line. His jailers place 
red pepper in a man's eyes and violently rub 
them; they place scorpions in the orifices of his 
body; they thrust poison thorns into the orifices; 
they compel the prisoner to don leather trousers 
and then place in the trousers two wild, half- 
starved cats, allowing them to fight until they 
have torn themselves and the man's legs nearly 
to pieces. 

The "cat torture" broke down the obstinacy 
of our burglar, and he told of an old, unused 
well in the jungle where he had hidden the goods. 



There, sure enough, they were, though many ar- 
ticles were ruined. 

The culprit was convicted and underwent se- 
vere punishment. His conviction would prob- 
ably not have been so easy a matter had he pos- 
sessed money, for the courts of Hyderabad Dis- 
trict are corrupt to the core. Two annas (four 
cents) is the recognized price for a court witness, 
and for this he will perjure himself as long as 
anybody cares to listen. 

After the burglary, a watchman was hired to 
parade the compound all night long. Every 
night, when I went to the hospital for midnight 
rounds, I stepped over him as he lay asleep on 
the doorstep with his lantern and stick beside 



OUR Telugu shastri (professor), who used 
to come every day to teach us the lan- 
guage, was, as far as I can learn, a 
type of the Indian Brahman educated according 
to India's ancient ideals. His smooth-shaven 
face, his manner of dressing his hair — shaved 
all but the crown, and the hair of the crown 
gathered in a tight coil at the back — his plain, 
round, dark felt cap, and the flowing drapery 
of his white dhoti gave him a peculiarly femi- 
nine appearance. The umbrella he constantly 
carried had no special connection with rain or 
sun, but was a mark of rank, while the dark, 
heavy cord over his shoulder proclaimed that 
rank as highest — a "twice-born" Brahman. Al- 
ways when he came to our bungalow we knew 
that under the closely fitting coat, which he wore 
in deference to our ideas of propriety, the cord 
lay over the right shoulder. This meant that he 
was "unclean," for he could not eat or worship 
until he had finished his morning's task with the 



no-caste Christians. If we chanced to meet him 
in the afternoon, the cord rested on his left 
shoulder and we knew he was sacred and un- 

When he came to teach us, he would retain his 
hat but politely remove his shoes, as he bowed 
low with a deep-voiced ''Salaam, Datira Sahni 
Gahru!" (Greeting Honorable Madam!) 

Among his own people the shastri was con- 
sidered a profound scholar. He thoroughly un- 
derstood Sanscrit and Telugu, and could recite 
in those languages verses by the yard; he knew 
every detail of the lives of the Hindu gods, but 
he never heard of Jupiter or Thor. He told me 
one day of a sea of milk which surrounds the 
"Northern World." When I asked him if he 
knew that the earth was round, he smiled scorn- 

"That is a belief for you Western people only; 
you have many strange beliefs!" 

He was versed in Telugu art, but if we showed 
him a picture painted by an English artist — were 
it landscape or still life — he would turn it upside 
down, sidewise, and every other way, until at 
last he seemed satisfied — usually when it was up- 
side down. Gazing at it long and attentively, he 
would remark gravely, "Very fine!" and put it 



"What is it, Shastri Gahru?" we would ask. 

"I don't know what it is," he would reply, "but 
it is evidently very fine work." 

Some one has asked me why the Indian Brah- 
mans, known to be people of refinement and edu- 
cation, do not establish universities of their own 
instead of importing Western teachers. Our 
shastri is the answer. From reading and ques- 
tioning, I learn that there are probably few In- 
dians, unless they have had Western teaching, 
more broadly educated than the shastri. He was 
progressive withal. Miss Tombleson, one of our 
missionaries, used to visit Hindu and Mahom- 
edan houses of Medak, telling Bible stories and 
singing hymns. Always, when some new house 
opened its doors to her, the shastri was unques- 
tionably pleased. 

"But why are you pleased, Shastri Gahru?" 
she inquired one day. "You know I am working 
against your religion." 

"Yes, I know, I know, but I like to see any 
good work thrive." This inconsistency is truly 
Hindu. Logic is no part of the Hindu's makeup. 
Should you say to him, "Black is white," he would 
reply, with bowed head, "If you say it is so, it 
is so! Why should not black be white?" 

Another explanation of the shastri's attitude 
toward the Christians' work is that the Hindu 



has no wish to propagate his religion, and no 
hatred of other reHgions unless they interfere 
with his caste laws, which are his physical, men- 
tal, and moral life, and a sin against which is to 
him the only sin! 

Even Mahomedan prejudice against our mis- 
sion work is not nearly so strong as might be 
expected. From the time when the successful 
medical work of the mission had conquered his 
prejudice against the Christians, Syed-Shar- 
Sahib, the Mahomedan High Priest of Medak, 
whom we always affectionately called **Dadu 
Badsha," had been our firm friend, and by his 
loyal words and letters had won openings for our 
work into many hostile villages. At one time he 
gave a feast to our outcaste orphans, and, to show 
them his kindly feeling, he passed among them 
when they ate and with his own hand gave to 
each child a morsel of food, although to touch 
an outcaste Hindu is, to a Mahomedan, repulsive 
beyond anything we of the West can imagine. 

There was much pomp and ceremony in the 
marriage festival of Dadu Badsha's daughter. 
Notwithstanding the wealth and high social po- 
sition of our host, we were asked, according to 
custom when we Western people were invited to 
Indian houses, to bring our own food and chairs 



and table linen. This we did, not forgetting some 
pieces of pink toilet soap, for we knew we should 
be met at the zetiana door by the High Priest's 
seven-year-old niece, who always begged for pink 
toilet soap. 

"If I wash with your kind of soap," she would 
say, "I shall be made happy by becoming pink 
like you." We told her the soap would make no 
difference, and that her own color — a velvety 
brown — was much prettier, but she was not con- 

One of the bits of soap was intended for Dow- 
lat, a Telugu slave child, who used to plead as 
eagerly for it as did her mistress. Dowlat was 
sold to the zenana in her infancy; but the light- 
hearted child with frowsy hair and filthy clothing 
felt no discontent with regard to her lot in life. 
Having never known loving care, she probably 
never missed it. Then, too, the Mahomedans are 
not, as a rule, unkind to their slaves, merely in- 
different. Among the three hundred and more 
persons who made up Dadu Badsha's household, 
there was, as is usual in Mahomedan domestic 
life, a pleasant democracy, the slaves and hired 
servants eating with the family and sharing sym- 
pathetically in the family joys and sorrows. Dow- 
lat's only unhappiness came from her dissatisfac- 



tion with her complexion, which was of a shade 
but Httle less sooty than soot. 

The wedding festivity proved altogether suc- 
cessful, although it grew a little wearisome when 
the Nautch girls had danced before us for an 
hour or two. These dancing girls are born into 
their profession, as is everybody in India, and 
are trained from babyhood to their immoral life, 
for the Nautch girls are wedded to the temples, 
that is, are prostitutes. Nevertheless, they suffer 
no reproach, are entertained with perfect cordial- 
ity in the houses of virtuous married women of 
every rank, and are treated with courtesy and 
respect by the men. 

A young Nautch girl who came to our hos- 
pital for treatment, amazed when we asked her if 
she would not like to lead the pure life of a mar- 
ried woman, replied lightly, ''Why? I am happy ! 
Besides, I was born to the caste of temple girl. 
What can one do?" 

At this wedding feast given by Dadu Badsha 
neither the dancing nor the songs were objection- 
able, and I learn they seldom are, unless men only 
are present. A fat, old person — the "Elephant," 
they called her — was the leader, and despite her 
weight and age was decidedly graceful. She 
trained well all the four younger women who ac- 
companied her, often stopping in the midst of 



some sentimental song to snap out a criticism of 
their voices or gestures. She rolled her eyes, 
frowned, and smiled, wonderfully contorted her 
eyebrows and mouth, moved her hands and arms 
from side to side and over her head in gestures 
mild or passionate, while she sang in the harsh- 
est of cracked voices, and her ankle bells kept 
time — a slow, steady "clink-clink-clink" — to the 
music of sitar and drum. The dancers in shabby 
saris, but with costly jewels, chewed betel nut 
and had little laughing asides as if they were 
taking part in an undress rehearsal. 

It was some variety when two Hyderabad 
girls took the place of the others. One, a girl 
of seventeen, with a handsome, wicked face; the 
other, a mite of seven, who clashed her anklet 
bells and danced heel and toe with the biggest 
of them. 

The wedding gifts and the outfit of the bride 
and of the bridegroom were very rich and gay, 
for in India the groom is not, as at home, a sec- 
ondary consideration. There were gold and sil- 
ver and jewels, silks and velvets and fine linens, 
and some dainty hand embroidery wrought by 
the bride herself. 

We women were permitted to see the bride, 
who sat on a crimson velvet couch, a crimson, 
gold-embroidered shawl completely covering her. 



For forty days and nights she might see no face 
but her husband's; so when the elder sister al- 
lowed us to peep beneath the shawl, the eyes of 
the bride were downcast, but the mouth told us 
that she realized, with the childish delight of her 
thirteen years, her importance on the grand occa- 
sion. At the real wedding ceremony a day or two 
later, which I did not witness, the bride was rep- 
resented by a man, and the entire service was 
with this proxy. 



IN India, America's Thanksgiving Day comes 
during the "melancholy days"; the hedge 
flowers have lost their brightest pink and 
blue, and the grass and trees look faded and yel- 
low in an unlovely old age. The day Vv^as always, 
of course, a very ordinary one to everybody but 

With contrasting memories in my mind, let 
me tell you how I spent my first Thanksgiving 
Day in India. 

Before the sun was well up, I tumbled out of 
my cot on the veranda and ran into my dressing- 
room. I had scarcely finished dressing when I 
heard on the other side of the door some one 
cough. As that is the usual way the noiseless- 
footed Indian servants announce their presence, 
I asked who was there. Venkiti, our assistant 
butler, made response, informing me that the 
other ladies had gathered at the table, and that 
whenever my Honor pleased I could be served 
with chota hazrai. 



Chota finished, Miss Harris and I started 
in a native cart for Medak village to visit a 
woman who for days had been very sick. Curl- 
ing our feet under us and sitting carefully, one 
in front of the other, in the middle of the cart 
to give leeway to our bobbing heads, we jolted 
over the rough road. Though the descent from 
these bandies, the only escape from which is 
over a high board at the back, appears more 
courageous than elegant, we were equal to the oc- 
casion, and, after a due exercise of forethought 
and gymnastics, found our feet solidly on the 

With bent heads to avoid the rafters, we en- 
tered the dark, close room where the patient lay. 
As is usual in any case of illness, the room was 
full of men and women. Ten women rushed to 
bring a light, or, rather, a hemi-demi-semi-light, 
for the Indian lamp gives the brilliant glare of 
an ordinary match with a London fog of smoke 
surrounding it. 

The sick girl, staring at us with dazed, fright- 
ened eyes, crouched in a far corner with the be- 
seeching cry, "Don't take me to the hospital!" 
We laughed her out of her fears — real fears to 
her, for the report had spread through the vil- 
lage that the English people had planned to offer 
a human sacrifice at the hospital so that luck 


, h\ \\T 

Indian carpenters at work 

String bed of India, the common sleeping cot 


might come to the place — and at last she drank 
the medicine we gave her and lay down to rest. 

We were scarcely out of the house before an 
excited Brahman rushed up to us. 

''Come quickly! Sitamma is dying!" 

In his home, Sitamma, his child-wife of thir- 
teen years, who had long suffered from an incur- 
able disease, had been moved from the bed to 
the ground, for a Brahman must die on mother 
earth. Her face, once round and smiling, was 
pinched and drawn with pain, and the hollow 
eyes piteously besought our help as her arms 
reached out to us to come nearer. Her mother, 
scarcely more than a girl herself, stood by in 
silent despair, the tears flooding her eyes, and 
her sari drawn tightly over her mouth. Gath- 
ered about her stood four or five old Brahman 
widows, unjeweled and unjacketed, with shorn 
gray hair and in saris of coarse white muslin. A 
boy cousin of twelve, bewitchingly beautiful, his 
supple young body set off to advantage by a 
white loin cloth, his only garment, leaned against 
a pillar, watching, solemn-eyed, our every move- 
ment. Twenty other friends and relatives were 
there, all the women and children wailing loudly 
and the men standing silently, searching our 
faces for signs of hope. 

Sitamma's family was one of the best in 


Medak. Rich ornaments of gold and jewels 
hung about her neck, her arms, her ankles, en- 
circled her fingers and toes, and pierced her nose 
and ears; and her clothes were of finest silk. 
But the room where she lay was devoid of furni- 
ture, mud-floored and rough-raftered. In a 
crevice of the dirty, white-washed wall was a 
crude, red-painted idol surrounded by offerings 
of fruits and vegetables, and with lamps burn- 
ing before it. Over the crevice a number of 
cheap advertising cards were pasted, and, crown- 
ing all, a gaudily colored photograph of an Eng- 
lish actor and actress. 

When we had done what we could to ease 
the sick girl's distress and had passed out of the 
house, we could scarcely proceed for the num- 
ber of people coming up, among them, Sitam- 
ma's great-great-grandmother, another Brah- 
man widow, bent double and leaning on a stout 
stick for support, her shrill, cracked voice rising 
higher than all the rest in long-drawn wails for 

Back to the dispensary and hospital duties! 

One of our hospital in-patients was a baby 
boy who had been so terribly mutilated by a 
pariah dog that he almost died before our long 
fight at last brought strength and health to the 
little body and a crooked smile to the red lips. 



Two others were victims of the habit among 
Mahomedans of giving their children opium in 
large quantities. Of these patients, one boy was 
three years old, the other, four months, but there 
was little difference in their size. They greatly 
improved under treatment, and the elder could, 
when he left the hospital, waddle weakly about 
on his spindle legs, his big goblin head rolling 
considerably but containing on its anterior as- 
pect a Cheshire cat expression. 

A patient suffering with rheumatic fever of 
the arm had been told by a hakim that the pain 
was caused by poison thorns placed in her flesh 
by evil persons. To prove his diagnosis, he had 
shown her a handful of thorns which he pre- 
tended to have extracted from her arm during 
his examination of her. Nothing we said could 
change the girl's conviction that the thorns had 
been in her arm, only she wondered why she felt 
no better after their extraction. 

Another case was that of a young woman who 
came to us with acute indigestion. When I made 
my rounds she asked: ''How soon can you cut 
me open and take it out?" 

"Take it out!" I repeated. 'Take what out?" 

"Why," she exclaimed, "you are a doctor; 
you have felt my pulse ; surely you know what ails 
me ! A priest told me that an enemy had placed 



the stone image of a god in my stomach, and I 
want that stone image cut out!" 

We pleaded and reasoned with her all in vain. 
She left the hospital in search of some doctor 
who would cut her open and take out the god. 

The five-year-old son of a Mahomedan of- 
ficial of Medak was one of our most grateful 
patients. We had been obliged to lance two 
boils on his leg, and, at the last cut, the child 
raised both arms to heaven, and, turning his 
tear-stained face upward, cried out, *'0h, God, 
God, what a sick man am I! Why hast Thou 
deserted me? Relieve me of this agony! Take 
me to Thyself! I can bear no more!" When a 
soothing dressing had been applied, however, 
the pain vanished and he smiled through his 
tears, promising magnificent presents for us all. 

Far more cause for gratitude had the bonny 
boy of two, whose eyelid healed well although it 
was gashed in half a dozen places by the horn 
of an angry bull. Mercifully, the eye was spared. 
Every day, while I applied medicine and dress- 
ings to his eyelid, the wee lad howled himself 
hoarse; and every day my eyes were wet with 
tears over the plump, naked, brown baby who 
had to suffer such pain, and who, after the dress- 
ings were ended, would spring with a tearful 
smile straight into my arms, and lay his loving, 



forgiving head on my shoulder as I carried him 
to his mother. 

Amadbhi, a Mahomedan girl-wife, had been 
for weeks a patient in our hospital. We al- 
lowed her young husband, who waited im- 
patiently for her recovery, to make his home on 
our front veranda — a neat, little bachelor home, 
all in the space of a few feet, with a blanket for 
a bed, his own turban for a pillow, a clay lamp, 
and a little pile of pots and pans for cooking 
his simple meals. He was always spotless in 
appearance, for there was a lake close by and 
on the flat stones he pounded his garments clean, 
hanging them to dry on the bushes along the 
bank. Several times a day, Amadbhi donned 
her hhourka, thus hiding her face from all other 
men, and crept around to cheer her young hus- 
band in his solitude, until at last she recovered 
and they went their happy way. 

A charming Mahomedan princess of Hydera- 
bad, who had been at various times a patient of 
ours, made a pretty picture as she reclined on 
her bed with her pet fawn — a wide blue ribbon 
tied in a bow about his slender neck — snuggling 
against her. This princess gave us, in gratitude 
for treatment received, land in one of her own 
villages on which to build a chapel, and free per- 



mission to preach Christianity throughout the 

We had a young Arab woman as a patient in 
our hospital. The Arabs are a manly race, with 
the deserved reputation of being *'a faithful 
friend and a dreaded foe." Their costume is 
very picturesque; a short, striped skirt reaching 
barely to the knee, a turban to match, the end 
streaming to the waist at the back, long coat of 
white muslin, low shoes with toes turning back 
in long points toward the ankle, and belt-sash 
stuck full of pistols and dirks ornamented with 
gold and silver and jewels. Every day the hus- 
band and brothers of our Arab patient came to 
see her, one of the big fellows always sitting out- 
side her door at night to keep watch over her 

One of these Arabs asked me if I would open 
an abscess for him. Calling to mind the shrink- 
ing, cowering Hindu when anything surgical is 
in evidence, I warned the Arab, as I picked up 
my knife, to sit quite still, and added in soothing 
tones: ''It will hurt but a second!" He smiled 

"I am not a child. Doctor Mem Sahib; I do 
not fear pain!" 

And he smiled on, never flinching, during the 



The idol of all these Arab giants and of their 
kinswoman was her baby Esau. Like a group 
of children, they would gather about and watch 
intently every time little Esau was fed his pre- 
pared food from a nursing bottle. 

"This matter of bottle-feeding," said the 
father, "is from your country. No one in India 
would have thought of it!" 

Rama, a Brahman boy of thirteen, with deli- 
cate hands and feet like a girl's and with an af- 
fectionate, gentle manner and an engaging smile 
that sent him straight into the hearts of all who 
knew him, suffered with diseased feet so that 
for two years he was altogether unable to walk. 
His father, a hakim (Indian herbalist), who had 
vainly made every effort to cure the boy, hated 
our Mission from both professional and religious 
jealousy, and it severely humbled his pride when 
he brought his son to our hospital and begged us 
to attempt his cure. The serious operation we 
performed was, happily, successful, and when 
the boy could run about as merrily as any other 
laddie, the father seemed to put aside his last 
bit of resentment and suspicion in regard to us. 

When I visited Rama's room the evening be- 
fore he left usj he sat on his bed surrounded by 
his adoring father and his four adoring uncles — 
Rama is the only boy in all the family — who 



listened with admiration while he sang in his 
shrill voice the old Hindu songs they love. 

Notwithstanding the Brahman fashion of 
wearing his hair — shaved all but the crown — and 
the wide red and yellow caste marks on his fore- 
head, Rama looked almost beautiful as, with 
shining eyes, he cuddled close in his arms the 
English doll we had given him, a blue-eyed lady 
in a pink dress, to whose finery he had added 
garlands of white jasmine. As I entered the 
room, Rama and the elder gentlemen rose v*^ith 
profound salaams and the boy laughingly threw 
a long jasmine garland about my neck and made 
his dollie salaam to me. 

As I patted the lad's head and tweaked the 
long, sacred lock hanging from his crown, he 
laid his cheek against my arm and murmured in 
his pretty oriental way: "To-morrow I shall be 
at home and very happy, but I shall miss the dear 
white ladies. When you say good-night with 
those loving words and caress me thus, a great 
peace like the soft wings of a bird closes over 
my spirit and I sleep well and sweetly." 

More and more did I wonder, as the days went 
by, that we had patients from any other place 
than our own village of Medak, because of the 
difficulties and peril in reaching us. 

Ramavva, a high caste Hindu woman, used 


to come to us every few months for treatment, 
caring nothing that, to do this, she had to ride 
alone for three days on the back of a buffalo 
through the rough, lonely jungle. 

When she arrived at the hospital one night, 
she told us an incident of her journey : 

"You know," she began, ''that I have learned 
many Bible stories and Christian hymns here at 
your hospital, and at home I tell my family the 
tales and sing the hymns for them. By the tale 
which I will now relate, you will perceive that 
I am a Christian at heart, though I implore you 
to tell no one, for I wish to have no domestic 

"As I journeyed toward the hospital yester- 
day, I was passing through the woods when I 
saw a camp of Dacoities (Hindus who are born 
to the caste of robber and murderer) among the 
rocks. They were very near, and I feared they 
had already heard my buffalo trampling and that 
I was lost. Then I remembered the words of 
the Christians, and, jumping down from my bul- 
lock, I knelt on the grass and prayed: 'O Jcsu 
Swami (Lord Jesus), save me!' When I arose, 
I looked, and behold ! the wicked men had not no- 
ticed my approach, so I quietly led my buffalo a 
roundabout way and came on in safety." 

Ward rounds ended, I went to the dispensary. 


Kadrabhi was the first to greet us. Kadrabhi 
was a Mahomedan woman of rank and, therefore, 
had to keep gosha. Too poor to own a curtained 
zenana bandy, she would come afoot in the dark- 
ness of the early morning and out again when 
the sun had gone. 

Then the patients came in force, plucking our 
sleeves, crowding upon us, and shouting their 
symptoms in loud tones, until we laughingly cov- 
ered our ears with our bands and our nurses 
brought them to order. 

A large, muscular woman showed us a re- 
cent fracture of the wrist, with hand swollen to 
a ball. We removed the peacock feather which 
she had tied about her wrist for good luck, and 
prepared for treatment. Suddenly terror seized 
her, and before we could stop her she had fled. 

Another woman who had been holding over 
her face the corner of her sari drenched with 
blood, removed the cloth, disclosing a hideous 
mutilation. Her husband, to punish her for in- 
fidelity, had, as is customary in such cases, cut 
off her nose. 

One of our coolie women brought to us her 

"Will you burn her stomach, please. Honor- 
able Doctor Madam?" 


In the Medak Dispensary. Offerings of a grateful patient (child), 

sheep and garlands. Mother in bhourka. Dr. Munson 

holds child on her knee. 

Mahomedan Madas bringing gratitude offering of sheep garlanded 
with flowers. Dr. Munson seated- 


*'Why?" I asked in amazement, for the child 
was in perfect health. 

"Oh, it will keep her well. My stomach was 
burned when I was a baby, and see how well I 
am," and she proudly displayed three wide ugly 
scars on her brown skin. 

Will the Indian hakims ever realize for how 
much their ignorance is responsible? 

A child was brought to us with her eyelids 
nearly burned through for a simple inflamma- 
tion. When I asked her mother what other treat- 
ment the eyes had received besides the burning, 
she replied: *'The hakim has done all things 
known to him. The last treatment was red pep- 
per to be rubbed into the eyes every hour." 

A day later came a baby boy struggling with 
agony in his mother's arms, the delicate flesh of 
his abdomen so deeply burned that the bowel 
slightly protruded and made his death inevitable. 

Five-year-old Mahomedan Madas was brought 
to us with his cheek torn open from nose to ear 
and deep down to the bone where one of the vi- 
cious Indian ponies had bitten him. The village 
hakim had put foul dressings on the wound till it 
was thoroughly poisoned and the child was dan- 
gerously ill. Every day he had to undergo a 
very painful treatment, but he seemed to know 
we were trying to help him, for only a low moan 



now and then betrayed his suffering. Madas 
must have felt that the last Thursday in Novem- 
ber was a day of special gratitude, for that morn- 
ing he, with his mother and aunt, walked into 
the dispensary, leading by a rope of grass a large 
black sheep garlanded with wild flowers. The 
boy bowed to the ground in his salaam, and as 
he placed the leading rope in my hand, lisped: 
"Because you made me well, dear Doctor Mem 
Sahib, I now with deep gratitude present to you 
my sheep." 

We heard a sound of wheels and a loud shuf- 
fling in the courtyard as a zenana handy, cov- 
ered over with plaited straw and closely cur- 
tained, emptied its contents. Whenever a 
zenana handy emptied its contents, I felt inclined 
to doubt the old axiom, *'No two bodies of matter 
can occupy the same space at the same time." 
After the piatient, an old lady with chronic indi- 
gestion, had been helped out, there slowly clam- 
bered to the ground women with their head cov- 
ering thrown back as if in enjoyment of the 
untainted air of heaven; ornaments covering 
nose, ears, forehead, neck, arms, ankles, lingers, 
and toes, chinking heavily as they walked; and, 
in almost every instance, plump babies sat astride 
their hips. Then there tumbled out small boys 
in red fez and long, white coat and trousers; and 



girls in gay pajamas and short over-garment of 
coarse net, their bodies loaded with ornaments 
like their elders. Bonny youngsters these who 
seized our hands and danced around us begging 
for a rose or a doll or a sweet, their black eyes 
looking out of chubby olive faces, full of a win- 
ning impudence. But they had learned courtesy, 
too, for nothing was received without a clear- 
voiced "Salaam, Doctor Mem Sahib!" and a 
graceful bend from the waist, as the right hand 
was pressed to the forehead. 

Then came the usual equipment of a patient 
who expects to remain in the hospital: Brass 
cooking utensils of every imaginable size and 
shape, rice, clarified butter, vegetables for cur- 
ries, other foodstuffs, and then a pile of wraps 
and bedding. 

In these matters our hospital had to depart 
from strict Western discipline. Unless the fam- 
ily, or at least one or two members of it, had 
been allowed to move in with all the parapher- 
nalia necessary to light housekeeping, we should 
have had no patients in our hospital. In a way 
it was a help, because, never having enough 
nurses and other hospital assistants, we resigned 
much of the care of the patient to her family with, 
of course, careful supervision by our own nurses. 

Very different from the Mahomedan children 



was the naked Hindu boy close by, who, with 
the sacred lock of his crown hanging listlessly 
from his shorn head, shrank behind his mother 
with a wail of fright at the strange white faces. 

Another fracture and another hakim treat- 
ment! The boy's hand was badly swollen, the 
arm bound in a vise, and the fracture not reduced 
at all. This time the sufferer was a Brahman 
boy, and, when the arm was neatly dressed and 
bound, his mother, who had accompanied him, 
inquired: ''How can he bathe?" 

"Let him bathe the rest of his body, but leave 
that one arm," I replied. 

"Then he cannot eat," she argued, "for he is 
a Brahman." And she departed with a look on 
her face which plainly said, "Fracture or no 
fracture, that arm shall be washed before he 
touches a morsel of food." I have no doubt that 
twice daily our dressings were soaked with water 
if not entirely removed. 

At the far corner of the men's veranda 
crouched a tall Hindu, now fingering his necklet 
of snakes' vertebrae and now a written charm — 
mantrum — in a brass box tied around his arm. 
His eyes were wide with terror and his lips 
scarcely able to frame a request to have an 
abscess cut. His baby son had just been cured 
of an abscess covering nearly the whole leg, and 



the man's confidence in our healing powers had 
overbalanced his fear of the knife sufficiently to 
bring him to us. 

"Now, have courage," I exclaimed, "and it will 
be over in a second." 

"Oh, no, oh, no!" he howled. "Give me 
sleeping medicine as you gave to my little boy. 
I have no courage; I shall die!" 

So a whiff or two of chloroform, a quick cut, a 
simple dressing, and all was over, and the grate- 
ful fellow pressed his forehead to our shoes. 

"And how did you say I am to take this medi- 
cine?" inquired an old woman to whom I had 
already given clearest directions in my best 

"Four days, eight doses, one dose every morn- 
ing, one dose every evening." 

"Salaam, honorable lady, I am your slave; it 
is four doses and every evening I shall drink." 

"No, eight doses, four days." 

"Yes, my honorable grandmother, I kiss your 
feet; I shall drink in the morning and not in the 
evening, for eight days." 

"No," desperately. "Now listen! Four days, 
eight doses, every day two doses, one in the morn- 
ing and one in the evening. Good-by! Salaam!" 

"Salaam, my queen of queens! I will do as 


you say and will not drink in the morning or in 
the evening, but in the noonday for eight days." 

And off she went, repeating and re-repeating 
the directions with her own variations, and I 
could only feel grateful that the remedy was 
harmless and her mode of taking it mattered 

A few more malarias and bronchitises, two 
major surgical operations, and then breakfast, 
which consisted of fruit, followed by curry and 
rice and always tea. 

After breakfast came the noonday rest-time, 
when all the Indian world sleeps and the very in- 
sects seem to hold their breath. 

Nap ended, I went out to tea, which, like chota 
hazrai, was a simple meal — fruit, bread, cakes, 
jam and tea. 

Another look at the patients, and then I gal- 
loped off to make my afternoon visits in the vil- 
lage, my syce, with one hand on the stirrup, run- 
ning beside the horse. 

In the West, what a record in cross-country 
running the Indian syce would make ! 

Our Davadass, a man of fifty years, has run 
one hundred miles in two days — fifty miles, a 
night's rest, and then the other fifty. It was a 
pleasure to watch him as, with dhoti bound 
tightly around the loins, he would run on and on 


Dr. INIunson operating in Medak Hospital 

Corner of medical ward, ^ledak Hospital. Dr. Munson 
with head nurse and patients. 


with swift rhythmical gait that never seemed to 

Dinner was at half past seven — my Thanks- 
giving dinner! The turkey at home was repre- 
sented by jugged goat which, though not so 
strongly flavored with circus posters as might 
be expected, required some skill and experience 
in the art of mastication. I looked wistfully on 
while the others ate with relish such barbarities 
as tahku (the Indian hot flavoring agent), kah- 
ram curry (it is a wonder there was any skin 
left on their tongues!), and the native vegetables 
which all tasted alike to me and all like slippery 
elm. But then I reflected with pride that the 
ancient Romans did not surpass us altogether in 
luxury of diet, for one evening we dined on pea- 
cock and ants' eyes. The peacock was no less 
palatable because the entire bird cost but six- 
teen cents ; and the ants' eyes were no less highly 
valued because we had them at every meal — with 
the rest of the ants' "material organized sub- 
stance" (Venkiti always forgot to cover 
the sugar bowl). 

As for the peacock, when I learned what the 
poor thing had suffered before its death, my con- 
science smote me for having eaten it. That the 
birds may not be able to find their way back to 
the woods, the trappers sew their eyelids together, 



not always careful to sew the eyelids only; fre- 
quently the eye is pierced. 

After dinner, I went again to the hospital, had 
a few friendly chats with the patients, and then 
came in to study for a while under the light of 
the big punkah lamp (a lamp with a shade sur- 
rounding all the sides and curving over the top, 
protecting it from the breeze of the punkah). 

The jackals howled vociferously; the flying- 
fox gave every now and then a shrill, hissing 
whistle; the night owls hooted mournfully, and 
the frogs and crickets joined their voices to the 
chorus. Everything was so different from home 
— the loneliness, the eternal summer, the heavy 
responsibility! I was too busy in those Indian 
days for a severe attack of homesickness, for 
every minute had its pressing duty which could 
not be put aside for any little "joy in sorrow" of 
mine. Nevertheless, I felt sometimes that the 
world was very thick through, and the word 
"America" sent an almost painful thrill down 
my spinal column. I liked my work; I liked 
India; but my altogether lovely home country 
grew dearer to me every day. 

East, West, 
Home's best ! 

But the air was fragrant with the breath 
of jasmine and roses and oleander, and the moon- 



light was glorious. I was glad indeed to see my 
dear "Moon-girl's" friendly, comforting glance. 
In India, the Moon-girl does not hold up her 
head in her proud American way, but gazes ever 
downward. Astronomers may call it "diurnal 
libration," or what they will, but I know she 
bows her head in sadness for that sad land. 

So the day ended, and, creeping into my 
veranda cot, I forgot Thanksgiving Day in for- 
eign lands and all other forms of self-pity, and 
slept dreamlessly under the Moon-girl's tender 
gaze and the soft caress of the night breezes. 



I HAVE already described the charm of the 
Christmas season in India; the balmy air, 
the wealth of garden bloom, the green 
trees and greener grass giving no hint of the 
cold, white Christmas season of the West. 

My first Christmas at Medak was just such 
a day as India expects at that time of year — not 
a cloud in the sky. From the dark of Christ- 
mas Eve to the dawn of Christmas Day, the 
boys and girls and coolies came in sets and sang 
Christmas carols near the veranda where we lay 
in bed, only stopping when a present was thrown 
to them. 

The morning service was held at the dliar- 
matsahla, a sort of hostelry whose generous size 
helps much toward the accommodation in the 
compound of the thousands of Christians from 
the district outside of Medak who foregather 
with the Medak Christians on any special oc- 

It was an inspiring scene when all those In- 


dian Christians, in their gaily colored clothes and 
with eyes and teeth and jewels shining bright 
against the brown of their faces, waved their 
arms above their heads, while they sang in loud, 
jubilant chorus: 

Victory to Jesus ! 
Victory to Jesus Christ ! 
Victory to the Lord Jesus Christ! 
May His Kingdom come ! Amen ! 

At the school we had games and a merry 
feast with the children, when we all sat about 
on the floor, eating with our fingers from plain- 
tain leaf plates. 

Then we superintended the festivities at the 
hospital. Every arch and pillar of the long hos- 
pital veranda surrounding the courtyard was 
decorated with Japanese lanterns and garlands 
of flowers. All the boys and girls had pretty 
presents; and though some of the child invalids 
could not be moved from their beds, they stretched 
their wasted arms for the big doll or the toy 
horse with all the longing of the others. 

At night, after a huge bonfire and the distri- 
bution to the Christians of the Christmas-tree 
presents, we again sat down on the floor and ate 
with the Indian people. Then Mr. Posnett, their 
beloved 'Tadre Sahib," showered sweetmeats 
among them, and the day's festivities were ended. 



WHEN we considered the pros and cons 
of a hot summer on the plains, the 
cons predominated and we decided to 
go to Mussoorie and Simla. 

On our journey, we had the whole railway- 
coach to ourselves, and, lounging in kimonos, 
we were very comfortable in spite of the heat, 
the ovenlike breeze being cooled by its passage 
through grass window blinds saturated with 

As we neared the Ganges, we passed a band of 
pilgrims, most of them sick or aged, filing 
through the dust of the roadway. Some of these 
weaker ones crept painfully along by themselves; 
some leant on the arms of their stronger com- 
panions ; and all struggled onward with the hope 
of washing in the sacred Ganges before their 

At Dehra Doon we came to the last railway 
station before the ascent to Mussoorie. After a 
refreshing lunch and rest at the hotel, a four- 



mile drive through the Doon, one of the most 
beautiful and fertile of Indian valleys south of 
Kashmir, brought us to the base of the moun- 
tains; and then came a ride of eight miles up the 
steep mountainside, in a dandy (a cushioned, 
boat-shaped chair carried on the shoulders of 
four coolies). 

The moonlight brought out clearly the sharp, 
black peaks high overhead, and threw colossal 
shadows on the solemn valley below. The only 
sound that reached us was the pattering of the 
coolies' bare feet, or a sudden burst of talk or 
song or laughter among them. Round and round 
the mountain we curved, its rocky walls reach- 
ing straight up for hundreds of feet above our 
narrow path, and straight down, blotted out in 
a yawning chasm of darkness below. Then came 
the quiet coolness of the denser wood, and my 
head gave several warning nods; so, half-asleep 
and half -awake, I passed through that seductive 
green to the heights beyond. 

There at Mussoorie, where the season was 
like England's June-time, we passed delightful 
days among the pines and woodland flowers, 
while, above the clouds high overhead, the ma- 
jestic, snow-crowned Himalayas, range on range, 
swept off into space. 



Then on we went to Simla, Kipling's paradise 
on earth. 

As at Mussoorie, we spent most of our time 
dreaming the days away "under the deodars," 
but we also enjoyed wandering about the village 
searching out the places filled with memories of 
Kim and other friends. 


DORA CHATTERJEE, my college friend, 
whose sister, Mrs. Nundy, I had vis- 
ited in Hyderabad, had invited me to 
her home in Hoshiarpur, so, arranging to meet 
the English girls on the way back to Medak, I 
went to Hoshiarpur. Dora's cousin, a young In- 
dian prince, met me at Jullundar, and we chatted 
pleasantly until Dora's father, Dr. Chatterjee, 
the well-known scholar and philanthropist of the 
Punjaub, arrived to take me to Hoshiarpur, some 
twenty-five miles distant. As we bowled over 
the smooth, hard road, as well kept as a city mall, 
Dr. Chatterjee told me fascinating tales of his 
boyhood days when he was a Bengali Brahman, 
and of the bitter persecution he suffered when 
he became a Christian. The long drive seemed 
scarcely to have begun before it ended and we 
were at Hoshiarpur, where my dear college mate 
and her charming mother and sisters greeted me 
most cordially. 

The Chatterjee homestead was a fine old place, 


indeed, a large, white bungalow encircled by wide 
verandas and set far back from the road amid 
shade trees, orchards and gardens. 

The days passed swiftly and pleasantly. 
Every morning Dora and I rose with the sun, 
and, after working most of the day at Dora's 
hospital in the city, we spent the early evening 
in one festivity or another — a tennis or badmin- 
ton party, a drive, a dinner or tea. calls, and 
usually two or three combined, for there are many 
English people of the Civil Service stationed at 

It was hard indeed to leave my friends and 
the happy life of the Punjaub to begin the long, 
hot journey southward. 

Sightseeing is, I think, usually more interest- 
ing than comfortable, and my experience in 
Delhi was no exception to the rule. The place 
was like a furnace, but fascinating in the curious 
mixture of growth and decay that marks this 
old city which was for so many generations the 
capital of the Mogul emperors. 

Chandni Chauk, the "Street of Light," might 
be termed also the ''Street of Life," for I never 
before saw or heard such a swarm of bees in 
butterfly garb and human form as that which 
makes this street one of the busiest in India. 

An English soldier took me through the fort 

Dora Chatterjee 


then used as barracks for the English army. 
Though ruinous far beyond the fort at Agra, it 
was decidedly imposing, and the Diwan-i-Khas, 
or Private Hall of Audience, was unique in the 
beauty and taste of its gorgeous ornamentation. 
Open on all sides to the palms and the sunshine 
and the penetrating blue of the Indian sky, with 
graceful Saracenic columns and arches, richly 
carved, gilded, and inlaid, until the whole room 
is one blaze of gold and silver and jewels, flash- 
ing blue, red, purple and green, it formed a fit 
setting for the famous Peacock Throne which 
once stood there, and you could not wonder that 
it inspired the distich written in Persian on the 

If on earth be an Eden of bliss, 
It is this ! It is this ! It is this ! 

The Jumma Musjid at Delhi, the largest 
mosque in the world, is very majestic with its 
white marble ornamentation on red sandstone; 
but I had seen the Pearl Mosque at Agra, which 
is built on somewhat the same plan; and the Pearl 
Mosque is so much purer and lovelier that I 
could part without regret from the Jumma 

Although it was noon when I left the Musjid, 
I drove eleven miles to the outskirts of the city, 
where, in the midst of a wilderness of pathetic 



ruins, rose that wonderfully carved shaft of red 
sandstone — world-renowned and rarely beauti- 
ful—the Kutb-Minar ! 

The drive back to the city was cool and rest- 
ful, and I felt quite refreshed when I resumed 
my railway journey. 

The English girls had rejoined me and we 
had dined at one of the stations when, as we re- 
entered our coach, we saw that we were not 
alone. In one of the "upper berths" a deer-eyed, 
brown woman peeped shyly out from her 
bhourka. Close to her breast she held a chubby 
two-year-old boy, w4io seemed inclined to cry at 
sight of us. Just then the anxious face of a 
young Mahomedan gentleman appeared at the 

"Madam," said he in English, "you must care 
my wife because she has small child; because of 
small child, you must care. I commit you, 
Madam, I commit you !" and he hurried away as 
the train started. 

Of course, we helped the timid cneatures down 
to a safer level, and did our best to make them 
feel more at ease. 

At Aurungabad station we left the train to 
make the trip to Ellora Caves. It was a long, 
hard journey in the hot noonday up the sun-dried, 
lonely ghats to the caves. We frequently re- 



lieved our ponies by walking, and every few 
minutes we sat down to rest. But the heat and 
the weariness were forgotten in our wonder and 
admiration for those vast, underground temples 
which, gouged and chiseled ages ago out of the 
solid rock, extend for a mile and a quarter along 
the face of the hill. 

As I stood beside the Buddha in the ''Car- 
penter's Cave" my waist came just to his knee, 
and I climbed up on the knee and sat there for 
a while to give the rest of our party an idea of 
the size of the image. 

In the Brahmanical caves, the old legends that 
Mrs. Keskar had told us came swarming back 
upon me. The handsome, mischievous boy- 
Krishna was there, and there was Hanaman- 
thadu, the Monkey-General. Gluttonous Ganesh, 
fat and kindly, with his absurd elephant-head, 
gazed blandly at us over his broken tusk; heroic 
Rama and his gentle Sita wandered through the 
enchanted wood; Siva of the frowning brow slew 
his enemies or peacefully played chess with his 
terrible wife, Parvati; and amorous Vishnu 
whispered his love-tale into the ears of Lakshmi, 
his beautiful consort. 

Every line in these underground marvels was 
clear and accurate. Each petal of the lotus- 
flower stood out in bold relief; and the pillars in 



the great vaults were as straight and smooth as 
if planed by an expert carpenter. Nothing but 
a visit to the place itself could convey its atmos- 
phere, the dark corners where bats cling to the 
ceiling or object, with sharp squeaks, to being 
disturbed, the earthy dampness, the deep, deep 
recesses rank with the wild beast odor of the 
hyenas, wolves, and leopards, which frequently 
take refuge there, and the filthy old priests who 
keep the place in order and haunt your every foot- 
step begging for bakshish. 

Not only does the Nizam of Hyderabad issue 
his own coinage and stamps, but also collects 
customs at the boundaries of his territory. The 
wearisome "red tape" of this customs procedure 
after our midnight landing at Mirzapally station, 
and the five hours' jolt over rough roads while 
our heads tumbled sleepily about and we hung 
desperately to the tonga to keep from being 
thrown to the ground, made our compound seem 
a veritable Eden as we entered its gates in the 
freshness of the early morning and received the 
hearty welcome of our people. 



RESPONDING to an urgent call from 
Ellareddypett to come there with medi- 
cines, we made a medical tour of a week 
to Ellareddypett and other outlying villages of 
the district. 

Our chaprassi (messenger and guard), fully 
armed, went a day in advance of us, as he always 
does in case of touring, to get the permission of 
the patel (head man) for our coming into his 
village; to arrange for the location of the tent, 
for the food and other supplies; and to hire an 
Indian band which should emphasize our worth 
and importance by parading the streets every 
night from sunset to dawn with instrumental din 
and loud shouts of, "The white lady doctors are 
coming! Bring your sick! Bring your sick! 
They will be cured!" 

Half a day after the chaprassi s departure went 
our assistants, servants, and equipment to make 
everything ready for immediate work on our 
arrival. Then early next morning. Miss Tom- 


bleson and I left the compound in the "box 
bandy," bound for Ellareddypett, where our way- 
had been prepared. 

I am a long-suffering individual with regard 
to modes of travel, various or curious, but then 
and there I decided that, when there should be 
no other vehicle at my disposal except our "box 
handy" the motion of which resembled that of 
a storm-tossed ship in a cross-current, I should 
risk the foot blisters and heat stroke of pedes- 
trianism in India! 

When, after long hours of rattling and bump- 
ing along the way, Miss Tombleson had grown 
sober in the eyes and white about the lips, and I 
had passed through the stage immediately fol- 
lowing that, the sun was low enough to risk walk- 
ing and we gladly crawled out of our discomfort 
and stretched our cramped limbs luxuriously. 

At Nargareddypett our evangelist and his wife 
entertained us to the best of their ability, but 
the dear people were sadly flustered in trying to 
supply the needs given us by the complicated 
domestic life of the West. We had brought our 
own loaf of bread and bottle of milk and, after 
long search and much scrubbing, our hostess 
produced two battered enameled plates and two 
sea-shells. That was all, but we managed very 
well as, seated on the plank which protected us 



from the mud floor, neatly and properly washed 
with cow-dung, we took turns at tearing off 
chunks of bread which we soaked in the milk 
and dipped up with the shells. 

Our weariness from the day's travel made our 
narrow string cot seem like a state bed of softest 
down. The cot had been placed under the win- 
dow of the little room where until midnight the 
village Christians sang their evening hymns — 
flats a specialty and sound their chief object; the 
snores of the chaprassi and bandy driver from 
the veranda near us came plainly to our ears; 
and the squealing and grunting of pigs from their 
pen six yards away mingled with the sudden 
snort of an astonished bullock or buffalo that, 
wandering idly about the grounds, had discov- 
ered on close investigation that our faces were 
not a midnight meal. Nevertheless, we turned 
over — simultaneously of necessity — and slept like 
babies till the morning sun shone full on our eyes. 

Another meal of bread and milk and we started 
again toward Ellareddypett. With yesterday's 
experience fresh in our mind, we decided to walk 
and trudged on for an hour and a half, when the 
hot sun compelled us to seek the refuge of the 

A royal welcome awaited us at Ellareddy- 
pett. Mr. Bursoji, the Avul Taluqudar (chief 



governor of the district), is a warm friend of 
Mr. Posnett's, so here in Mr. Bursoji's province 
everything was ours and the principal officials 
of the place, anxious to please their lord, treated 
us with the utmost kindness and consideration. 

We were grateful for the courtesy which had 
placed at our disposal the best house in town, 
notwithstanding the readily overlooked discom- 
fort of the small, dark rooms with walls dirty 
with the dirt of a dirty generation, and of the 
rickety wooden stairs of the step-ladder variety 
which led to a rough loft above and which 
swayed under our weight, threatening at every 
moment to precipitate us to the floor below. 

As usual, we walked through the town in pro- 
cession to let the people know we had come, and 
everywhere we were greeted most cordially. We 
saw several former patients, wives and children 
of rich Jain merchants, who loaded us with gifts 
of various foodstuffs and told our servants not 
to pay for supplies while in town, but to send to 
them for anything we wished. 

The Jains, few in number, are the remnant 
of the Indian Buddhists, and their faces show 
clearly their Mongolian origin. They are ex- 
tremists in the matter of protecting animal life. 
They cremate their dead on a stone carefully 
brushed, that no insect life may be unwittingly 



taken, and they have established in Bombay an 
asylum for the lower animal life, including fleas 
and other insects ; there men receive a daily wage 
for allowing the fleas to feed on their blood. 

It seemed incongruous for the mother of the 
family, dressed in costliest silks and velvets and 
loaded with jewels, to squat beside her tiny, 
smoky stone fireplace and cook the evening meal 
with her own hands. This is compulsory on ac- 
count of strict religious rules in regard to the 
purity of food eaten. This same lady showed us 
with fond pride her bedroom, a closet-like apart- 
ment, with one small window — its only furniture 
a string cot and a tall brass stand holding a clay 
lamp. All around the wall on shelves were 
dozens of brass and silver-plated cups and mugs 
and vases, while from the ceiling hung suspended 
colored balls of tinsel like Christmas tree orna- 

When bedtime came, I recalled one of little 
Eva Adkin's remarks. The mosquitoes had been 
unusually troublesome at Medak, and Eva in- 
quired: "Mother, what is the use of mosquitoes?" 

"I don't know, dear," replied her mother, "but 
everything God has placed on earth is of some 

"I suppose," concluded Eva thoughtfully, 


"when I go to heaven it wouldn't be poHte to ask 
God about that." 

My meditations at Ellareddypett were to the 
effect that I should risk the impropriety and 
seek a reason for the existence of the pests. 
When the torment from the vicious creatures be- 
came absolutely unendurable, we formed rolls 
from newspapers and, covering our heads with 
the sheet, pushed one end of the roll outside, 
making a passage for the air. When sleep over- 
came us, the rolls fell to the floor and we slept on 
unconscious of the vitiated air until the dawn 
found us gasping for breath and coolness. 

A third of the inhabitants of Ellareddypett 
were afflicted with elephantiasis, that disease of 
slow and insidious development which gives to its 
victims monstrous limbs like the limbs of an ele- 
phant. The people thus affected appeared to 
think their misfortune a trivial matter, and laugh- 
ingly showed us their misshapen limbs with the 
remark, "We want no medicine for it; it troubles 
us not at all." 

On the last evening of our stay at his village, 
the Mahomedan Tahsildar of Ellareddypett sent 
us a sumptuous dinner and called a few hours 
later to say farewell. The old man is childless, 
but he accepts this greatest affliction with a 
philosophy worthy of imitation. 



"I had children, boys and girls, but they are 
dead!" he sighed. "Kismet! We are taught not 
to grieve," and, touching his brow with his fore- 
finger, he turned away with a patient smile. 

For our protection on the road to our next 
stopping place, the Tahsildar sent with us a 
government chaprassi. 

"What!" exclaimed the chaprassi in injured 
tones, when the Tahsildar admonished him to 
take good care of us. "Will I not protect the 
Mem Sahibs? Do I not wear this?" And he 
clapped his hand boastfully on his brass plate of 
office attached to the shabbiest of brown shoulder 
straps. The noble gallant proved his devotion 
by always being somewhere else when wanted 
and by valiantly hitting with his stick the small 
boys who came in innocent curiosity to gaze at 
the white ladies. 

So, safe in the care of the doughty chaprassi, 
we passed through the old crumbling city gate 
and came immediately upon a holy well, a struc- 
ture about twenty feet square by many more 
deep, with elaborately carved stone balconies. 
All around the inside were stone steps leading to 
the water, by which the worshiper goes down 
into the well and leaves it after his bath of puri- 
fication to enter one of the near-by temples, each 
dedicated to a different god. After ringing a 



bell to call the attention of the god to his pres- 
ence, the devotee places his offering at the altar 
and prostrates himself in prayer. 

The idol in each temple is locked in a small 
room where only the privileged may enter, but 
we peeped through the chinks in one of the doors, 
and as our eyes became accustomed to the dark- 
ness we could see the gaudy, hideous thing in its 
gold and silver ornaments perched on its sacred 
chair, while the strong smell of incense reached 
our nostrils. 

At Kaliampett, the officials of the village placed 
the new dak bungalow at our service and, like the 
Ellareddypett officials, did all they could to make 
our visit pleasant. 

CJiota hazrai was scarcely over next morning 
when Abbishakamma came running to say 
that in the night, at the very gates of the vil- 
lage, a leopard had injured a woman and that 
they were bringing her to us. The victim, a 
Lombardy (Indian gypsy) girl barely nineteen 
years of age, was terribly mutilated about the 
face and chest; blood dripped from the wounds; 
her face was convulsed with terror; and she con- 
stantly screamed, "YaJidardai! Yahdardai!" (Oh 
me! Oh me!) 

The savage creature had struck her as she lay 
sleeping, her shrieks had awakened the rest, and 



their cries had driven it away. As it slunk off, 
however, it snatched from its mother's arms a 
boy three months old, and bore him away to 
the woods. The poor mother, they told me, re- 
fused to be comforted, and there was terrible 
confusion in the gypsy camp. 

After dressing her wounds, we sent the girl 
away somewhat pacified, but, through the wil- 
derness of bandages and strapping, there still 
came the low frightened moan, "Yahdardai! 

Our next stopping place was on the homeward 
route at a large, clean village by the side of a 
clear lake, and we pitched our, tent under a hos- 
pitably spreading tamarind tree. Then for sev- 
eral days we led a gypsy life in the jungle. 

The cooking was done in a stone fireplace under 
a tree, and, in spite of the primitive conveniences, 
excellent meals were prepared. Though the eggs 
were strained through the cook's unwashed fin- 
gers and the dishes were dried on the duster, we 
were grateful that the eggs were not strained, as 
is sometimes the case, through the cook's sleep- 
ing-blanket, and that the dishes were not dried, 
as they frequently are, on the lamp cloth. 

All day long people thronged to the tent, some 
for medicine, some to satisfy their curiosity. 

On the first day came the important officials of 


the village, who tried to sit on chairs in the Eng- 
lish manner, but who continually forgot and rest- 
lessly curled their feet under them or drew their 
knees to their chins as they talked. 

Then followed the villagers, each holding out a 
hand, with the laconic, ''Jerra soodoo!" (Just 
see!) and when we asked them if they suffered 
pain, staring in surprise with the exclamation: 
*'You have felt my pulse; you are a doctor; 
should you not know better than we?" 

There were also the women who came timidly 
to the tent, now drawing near and now retreating, 
needing medicine but afraid to drink for fear of 
some evil result from the drugs of the "for- 
eigner." One of them told us she feared to drink 
the medicine lest her babies be born white. 

''Never mind!" I replied, "if your children are 
born white, put them out in the sun a little while ; 
they will soon be black enough." 

Several of the women hid the faces of the ba- 
bies lest we should cast the "evil eye" upon them. 

The usual number of questions were asked as 
to what we ate and how, why we came to India, 
what salary we received, how old we were, 
whether Miss Tombleson and I were sisters 
or merely of the same caste, where our husbands 
were, and other delicate and impersonal inquiries, 
till our brains and tongues wearied with the ef- 



fort of making tactful and noncommittal an- 

Came also the hopeless cases that had tried 
everything else before risking treatment by the 
''white people." 

And with them all those sufferers who greatly 
needed us and wanted us and for whose sake only 
we should gladly have come. 

It was rather a shock to such faith as the peo- 
ple had in us when they learned that we could not 
give brains to an idiot girl nor arms to a babe 
born without those useful members, but, in spite 
of our glaring failures of this sort, they showed 
no lack of cordiality in their request that w^e come 
to their village once a week with medicines. 

At the end of every day, after the crowds about 
the tent had gone to their homes for the evening 
meal. Miss Tombleson and I would have a short 
swim in the lake or, lounging on the steps of one 
of those ruined temples almost invariably found 
on the banks of Indian lakes, we would pass the 
time wath song or story or silently watch the glo- 
rious color pageant in the western sky. 

After dinner we would play chess in the light 
of the big lantern until roused from our ab- 
sorption in the game by the tempting fragrance of 
hot chocolate and the voice of the boy over the 



steaming cups: "Missy ordering hot chocolate at 
bedtime; I bringing." 

So our tour ended and we came back, half 
glad, half sorry, to the routine of life at Medak. 


OUR ponies were startled when, as we rode 
through Medak one evening, a man sud- 
denly appeared in front of us sobbing 
and begging us to save the life of his daughter. 
We stopped to see what we could do, but always 
the same old story. The medicine of every hakim 
in the place had been tried, and we were called 
in when but a flicker of hope remained. 

I saw that the little girl's life was nearly ended, 
but I gave her some medicine. 

"I am your loving daughter, Doctor Mem Sa- 
hib!" she whispered, her thin hand weakly clasp- 
ingmine. "You will cure me, won't you?" Then, 
after a brief silence, and shyly: "You have such 
beautiful dolls! If I had a doll, I think I should 
get well." 

Hastening to the compound, I returned with a 
pretty English doll and, as the child clasped it in 
her arms, her smile was radiant. 

"Now I shall get well very fast," she mur- 
mured and sank into the death stupor. 



Two hours later when I called again, the loud 
wailing told its own story. The child spirit had 
gone home, and the doll still lay close against the 
quiet little bosom. 

It was an interesting change from our usual 
twilight gallop on the ponies when Dadu Badsha 
lent us one of his elephants for a ride. 

An elephant's back is as accommodating as a 
Broadway surface car — always room for one 
more — so eight of us, by the help of a ladder 
against the side of the kneeling elephant, and the 
supplementary aid of our "Padre Sahib's" strong 
right arm, mounted. Then, holding for dear life 
to the ropes that fastened the blankets securely 
in place, we waited until the changing slant of 
the broad back had become level before we 
breathed again. So, clinging fast to the ropes, 
we swung and lunged and swayed as the elephant 
ponderously made a circuit of the compound, and 
the anxious mahout, seated on the elephant's neck 
with his cruel-looking hook in hand, glanced 
round every little while to see if the laughing, 
careless riders behind him were safe. 

''How terrible it would be if we should fall!" 
exclaimed Mrs. Adkin, taking a firmer grip on 
the rope. 

"Don't worry, Mother !" said five-year-old Eric, 
reassuringly clasping his arms about his mother's 



waist. "You cannot fall for I will hold you very 

The sun was sinking to-day when we returned 
from our village visits, and we were somewhat 
alarmed for, in spite of the teachings of the Ko- 
ran and the Vedas, many Mahomedan and Hindu 
peasants get drunk every evening at twilight, and 
the scenes in the village at that time are both piti- 
ful and disgusting. It is not unusual to see a 
babe of four or five years reeling drunkenly from 
one to another of his drunken parents, who, 
laughing uproariously at the child's efforts to 
control his feet and tongue, ply him with more 
rice liquor or palm toddy until he drops helpless. 

On the evening of which I write we urged our 
ponies to special haste and were glad when we 
found ourselves within the gates of the com- 
pound, for the feast of Sankurathri would soon 

To everyone who knows of the Hindu gods 
and the bestiality ascribed to most of them it 
will bring no surprise that the Hindus have an 
annual feast of several days when they give them- 
selves entirely to the satisfaction of their lower 
natures, lying, thieving and otherwise wronging 
each other with impunity. On the last night, 
called "Sankurathri," every Hindu may, without 
sin, commit adultery. From the compound we 



could plainly hear the drunken, discordant shouts 
and singing of the villagers, as they celebrated 
this abominable feast. 

Not all the Hindu festivals are so abhorrent. 

The feast of Battakamma, part of the great 
feast of Dasara, for the worship of Sarasvathi, 
goddess of knowledge, has many beautiful and 
poetic features. 

To celebrate Dasara, the princes and nobles 
give dinners to the people ; everybody takes a holi- 
day and wears new clothes; ancestors are wor- 
shiped; the soldier bows to his sword, the mer- 
chant to his pile of money, the farmer to his 
plow, and all other men to the implements of 
their various occupations. The streets are full 
of shouting, singing Hindus and of garlands, 
bouquets, and banks of flowers. Brahman 
schoolboys, decorated from head to foot with 
flowers and carrying wands and bows and ar- 
rows made of flowers, walk in procession through 
the town following their schoolmaster and stop- 
ping at the doors of houses where they are likely 
to receive a present. The Mission bungalows are 
always favored and before an interested audience 
they sing in loud, shrill tones various action- 
songs, until, notwithstanding the picturesque ap- 
pearance of the chorus, the missionaries are 
compelled to preserve their ear-drums intact by 



giving a rupee to the joyous little bands, who 
salaam courteously and depart. 

Nevertheless, even Dasara has its bitterness, 
for every man, no matter how poor, is compelled 
by public opinion, the merciless arbiter of India's 
fate, to celebrate properly the feast even though 
he sell his own child to obtain money so to do. 

And there is another sort of cruelty. An im- 
portant ceremony of the festival is the sacrifice 
of a goat. Part of the goat's tail is cut off and 
red pepper applied to the wound. In agony the 
poor creature violently shakes the stump, scatter- 
ing blood on the bystanders, who eagerly rub their 
fingers in it and place the bloody fingers on their 
foreheads. Then, as the goat must die a sacri- 
fice by the hand of man without the use of a 
knife, this ''hand of man" drives a nail into each 
of the goat's eyes and ears and into every other 
orifice of the body, and finishes the sacrifice by 
literally tearing the tortured beast to pieces. 

Knowing such things as this, do you wonder 
that my mind sometimes reverts to the frequently 
recurring statements in our popular Western 
journals, where we of the Occident are advised 
to learn humanity from the East Indian? 

It is true t|iat Hindus worship many varieties 
of dumb animals; it is true, they do not often 
kill them outright. They look on indifferently at 



a sick brute's hours or days of agony — hopeless 
agony preceding death — and nothing would 
shock the Indian more or cause his eyes to open 
wider in horror than the suggestion that he kill 
the creature instantly. 

I love my Indian people, and I should like to 
concur in the optimistic opinion of them held by 
our journals at home, but I should indeed be a 
fatuous believer in the untrue to thus discredit 
the evidence of my own senses. 

In extenuation, however, let me add that the 
barbarities practiced by the East Indian usually 
arise not from a malignant spirit, but from a 
childish lack of imagination or from an apathy 
born of the tropics. 

In one of the zenanas I visited I saw a part- 
ridge in a cage so small that he could scarcely 
stretch his neck. The people told me they had 
caught two but one had died and this one was 
always pecking at the bars trying to free himself. 
At my request, they gave me the bird and, as I 
rode past a cornfield, I tossed the trembling cap- 
tive from my hand and he fluttered joyously away 
into the corn. 

One day I galloped past a group of men who 
stood about some object and from sheer curiosity 
I reined in my pony to see what was happening. 
One of the men had shot a flying fox through the 



wing and was holding it out in all its broad ex- 
panse while another man was arranging a cam- 
era for a photograph. The torn flesh dripped 
blood and at intervals of about ten seconds a by- 
stander would strike with a stick the broken bone, 
for the pleasure of seeing the wounded creature 
shrink back in agony. Each time the act was 
followed by a loud laugh from everybody pres- 
ent. The stern lecture I administered seemed to 
shame the men, and they promised to take the 
photograph and set the animal free without fur- 
ther torture. 

It is common in Bombay to load road carts so 
full that the bullocks are thrown up into the air 
from the burden. 

Only by the utmost caution and strict super- 
vision can a W^estern man keep his own dumb 
beasts from being starved by their caretakers, 
who ruthlessly steal their food and otherwise 
shamefully neglect them. Sister Adela Moss, one 
of our English ladies, riding in the bullock tonga 
with a driver who had newly come to the com- 
pound, saw him plunge an iron-pointed stick into 
the back of the bullock as he drove, and she in- 
stantly commanded him to throw away his wea- 
pon of torture. A moment later, she noticed 
blood trickling down the bullock's tail and, watch- 
ing closely, she saw the driver bend his head and 



deliberately bite with his own teeth the beast's 
tail until it bled afresh. 

Notwithstanding my constant horseback rid- 
ing", I was thrown one day and at the same time 
had a snake adventure. It was on one of my 
visits to a far village. My pony was forcing his 
way through a dense undergrowth in the forest, 
when I heard a rustle, and an immense python 
wriggled from the bush straight for my horse's 
legs. The pony trembled violently. Realizing 
what would happen, and remembering an old bi- 
cycle trick of relaxing and letting myself fall 
easily, I dropped to the bushes just as the pony 
reared and jumped sidewise into a roadside pond 
of muddy water. The snake was so long that I 
nearly fell on its tail ; but we all escaped unhurt 
— horse, snake, and woman. My hearty laugh 
as the ashen- faced syce helped me to my feet 
brought back the blood to his cheek, and without 
further adventure we proceeded on our way. 


IF obstacles cause one to appreciate the goal, 
then surely we should have enjoyed the Jah- 
tra. The Jahtra is a sort of Hindu county 
fair, where once a year the Hindus by thousands 
meet in a certain place and beseech the gods to 
give them children, or they make sacrifices as 
thank-offerings for children already granted. 

Rising before dawn, w^e piled ourselves and a 
good supply of medicine into the bandies and 
started off. Now, one may cross the Manjery 
River only by boat or by way of the new dam 
built in connection with the Manjery Irrigation 
Project, which has proved an immeasurable 
blessing to the Medak District. This dam 
stretches from shore to shore, a mile of mud- 
covered, slippery stones forming a path some 
four feet wide, with water two or three inches 
deep dashing swiftly over it to a bed of boulders 
twenty feet below. You may imagine our proces- 
sion: Miss Tombleson, Miss Wigfield and I in 
front, barefooted, with now and then a slip, a 
cry, and a regaining of our balance; the nurses 




and servants with luggage on their heads follow- 
ing; poor old Abbishakamma gray with fright, 
shrinking between two men and holding desper- 
ately to their arms; and before us and behind us 
a long unbroken line of Indians in gay holiday 

At the scene of the Jahtra itself not a tree was 
in sight, but boulders, boulders, boulders, cover- 
ing the hills and causing us to make our way 
along the paths by jumping from rock to rock. 

The smell of roasting flesh greeted us as we 
came upon a Hindu family who, with the help of 
two or three priests, were offering up a sheep in 
thanks for a chubby infant who rolled on the 
ground at his mother's feet. The sheep's head 
was roasting on the fire beside a black pot all 
marked with streaks of red and green and yellow 
and decorated with flowers, this pot holding the 
rice which would be eaten a little later at the 
feast. The father, who was skinning the sheep's 
body, was delighted to tell us all about the mat- 
ter; how last year he had come to this place to 
pray for a boy and how this year he had brought 
the boy himself. 

Almost immediately we came upon another 
scene still more impressive. In a little hollow of 
the rocks over a dirty pool of water presided a 
coarse-faced, outcaste priest. Whoever should 



bathe in this water and receive his blessing would 
be granted a child. And here they came, low 
caste and high, the eager faith of the high caste 
women causing them to forget, in their longing 
for domestic happiness, that the touch of the 
priest was defilement. They poured the filthy 
water over their bodies, and an old hag helped the 
priest to empty bowl after bowl of the water upon 
their heads. On the surface of the pool they 
placed flowers and the sacred tiilsi plant; they 
marked the rocky sides of the pool with red and 
yellow, rubbed the yellow dye well into their own 
faces and hands, and the priest solemnly placed 
a red mark upon their foreheads. Then, shiver- 
ing and dripping, they walked several times 
around the pool, placed a few pice in the hand of 
the priest, and departed for a continuation of the 
ceremony elsewhere. Following them, we came 
to a cave in the rocks where the priests had 
erected an "altar," and here the women received 
a garland and another blessing and went away 
hopeful. As we watched, Miss Wigfield's right- 
eous indignation burst forth : 

"Why do you deceive these poor women so? 
The great, true God alone can give them chil- 

And it rather took us aback when the priest re- 
plied — the women listening to every word: 



"Of course, this is all of no use. We know 
the gods will not grant children because of this. 
We do it to fill our stomachs. It is but a few 
pice and the women wish to pay it." 

And still, with his words in their ears, they 
allowed him to place the garlands about their 
necks and gladly put their pice into his hand. 

All day long there were new scenes and fresh 
excitement ; the bazaars were bright with cloths, 
foodstuffs, cheap jewelry and toys. A purple 
horse of most astounding anatomy inspired us 
to the paraphrase, 

We never saw a purple horse ; 

We never want to see one; 

But this we'll tell you that, of course. 

We'd rather see than be one. 

Performing bears and monkeys were put 
through their tricks ; beggars showed their loath- 
some deformities; vile intoxicants were sold at 
every turn ; young women and boys and hideous 
old witches wildly danced and shrieked, then 
trembling violently sank to the ground in a re- 
ligious "trance." 

What seemed in the eyes of the people the 
chief feature of the fair was a procession of some 
twenty bandies, filled with laughing youths, each 
bandy gay with paint and paper and tinsel, and 
drawn by a pair of bullocks decked out with 



bright streamers. All the long afternoon the 
bandies twined in and out among the rocks with 
never a pause, and always where they went the 
crowd was thickest. 

Just back of our tent whirled and danced and 
chanted a low-browed fakir, nude but for a loin 
cloth, and with his hair hanging below his knees, 
each separate strand so matted with dirt and 
grease that it might have been a leathern thong. 
A mother brought her baby to be blessed and 
the fakir paused long enough in his violent exer- 
cises to pass a strand of his hair over the baby's 
face, to mutter a few words of blessing and re- 
ceive his pay ; and then continued in his untiring 

We were delighted to see at the Jahtra many 
old friends. Every little while, as we passed 
along on our sightseeing expedition, somebody 
would dash from the crowd and throw himself at 
our feet or upon our shoulders, and we would 
recognize a grateful patient or an equally grate- 
ful relative of a patient. 

In the afternoon we dispensed medicines in the 
tent and though but few came to us, those few 
seemed impressed with Abbishakamma's story, 
told as only Abbishakamma can tell it, of heart- 
broken, childless Hannah and the little God-given 



FREQUENTLY in magazines and newspa- 
pers appear sarcastic comments on foreign 
mission work, which intimate that the con- 
verts to Christianity are merely "rice Christians," 
that is, men who accept Christianity for the 
worldly benefit they receive by so doing. 

I admit that many of our converts began as 
"rice Christians," but the nature of the Hindu is 
all conservatism. When he has, for any reason, 
left a beaten path in life, the new path he has 
chosen soon becomes as dear to his nature as was 
the old, and it would require as enormous an ef- 
fort to force him from it. From a "rice Chris- 
tian" he becomes as true a follower of Christ as 
the majority of Westerners reared in the faith. 
Rajannah, a high-caste Hindu without near 
relatives, had been deserted because of his help- 
lessness due to complete cataract of both eyes. 
When he came a beggar to the compound, Dr. 
Watts, to whose position at Medak I succeeded, 
operated on his eyes and restored to him partial 



sight. Deeply grateful, he professed Christian- 
ity, and both Dr. Watts and Miss Wigfield took 
a warm interest in his spiritual development, 
which seemed very rapid. When the time came 
for him to be baptized, the ladies assured Mr. 
Posnett that Rajannah was very intelligent and 
understood perfectly what baptism meant. As 
the old man stood in church before the whole 
congregation, Mr. Posnett questioned him as he 
questions all converts: 

"Rajannah, why have you become a Chris- 

"What could I do?" answered Rajannah. "I 
had no rice to fill my stomach, and I knew you 
would give me rice and work." 

Months later he was able to pass more suc- 
cessfully an examination for baptism, and when 
he was too old and weak to do more than pull 
the punkah, we could daily hear his cracked voice 
singing hymns in tunes quite original, or preach- 
ing Christianity to the dhirzi, a high-caste Hindu 
who used to sit on our front veranda with his 
little hand-power sewing machine, and sew for 
us all day. 

So Rajannah lived up to his light and, dying, 
told those who were with him that he should 
wake "in the Light of the Lord Jesus Christ." 

Bordena Venkaiah shows another type of 


Christian. Venkaiah had been notorious 
throughout the whole district for his brutahty. 
He had beaten one wife to death and had 
drowned another in a well. Then he heard the 
teachings of Christianity, became converted, and 
was baptized. He asked us for one of our school- 
girls for a wife, but we feared to give her to him, 
thinking the old, evil temper might break out 
again. The girl herself, however, begged us to 
let her marry him, saying she trusted him. So 
we consented to the union and it proved a very 
happy one. Venkaiah was devoted to his girl 
wife, and his one wish was for a son to crown 
his joy. A daughter came and another, but no 
son. Through it all, Venkaiah remained patient 
and loving to his wife and little daughters, but 
his daily prayer was for a boy. Then the boy 
came. They named him Gabriel, and his father 
worshiped him. When the little son was bap- 
tized, Venkaiah adorned a young buffalo with 
garlands of flowers and, as a gift of gratitude, 
proudly led it up the aisle of the chapel to the 

Gabriel was about ten months old and very 
bonny, when his father came to our hospital and 
said: "I am called to the city and have left my 
wife and children alone in our village. If any- 



thing should happen to them, you will do what 
you can? They are my life!" 

Scarcely two hours after his departure, the 
young wife came running with little Gabriel in 
her arms. He was in violent convulsions and 
just as she entered the hospital doors he died. 

When Venkaiah learned the sad news, he was 
like a maniac, but, in all his raving, he never for- 
got that he was a son of God : 

"O God, my Father, why have you slain my 
heart? O Gabriel, Gabriel!" 

And so over and over again. 

Several months later, when one of our mission- 
aries passed the cemetery, she saw Venkaiah ly- 
ing face downward on Baby Gabriel's grave, cry- 
ing mournfully, *'0 Gabriel, my son, my son!" 

Then another son came to him. When this 
child was born the young mother was alone in 
a distant village far from medical help, and, in 
giving life to the boy, lost her own. Venkaiah 
felt his wife's death keenly, but struggled on, 
fathering and mothering his little boy and girls. 
But the boy was always delicate and sickly and 
when one day Venkaiah brought him to our hos- 
pital the shadow of death already hovered over 
the sharpened features. After a few hours' lin- 
gering the baby died. As Venkaiah gazed on his 
dead child, his face was gray and drawn with his 



soul's agony, but this time there was no wild out- 
burst of grief. Folding his arms, he said quietly : 

"Now, all I have are in heaven but I am old 
and ready to go and I am glad they are all there 
w^aiting for me." Then, kneeling by the bedside, 
he prayed: "Now, O Lord, my Father, Thou 
hast all my treasures. Come again quickly and 
take me also to Thyself!" 

Our old Kedari vies with Bordena Venkaiah 
in the manly strength of his Christianity. A high 
official of his village, father of five grown sons, 
and owner of many fields, Kedari became con- 
verted to Christianity and sacrificed for his be- 
lief his family, his property, his all. His own 
sons cursed and stoned him in the village streets ; 
but, by patient endeavor, he at last won all his 
family to Christ, and every month thereafter 
Kedari, as his sons knelt beside him at the com- 
munion-rail, would smile proudly as he looked at 
them and then at his silver finger-ring which 
bore the Telugu inscription, "An elder in the 
Church of Christ!" 



A CERTAIN queen in a castle was in 
trouble. This sounds like the beginning 
of a fairy tale, but it is a plain twenti- 
eth century fact, and the romance is somewhat 
modified by adding that the queen is an ancient 
dowager, mother of the late rajah, and the trou- 
ble was merely cataracts which she wished re- 

As the patient could not come to us and as 
there were no cases in hospital which we could 
not safely leave, Miss Posnett, Miss Harris and 
I started out to perform the operation at the 
queen's own castle in the village of Parpanapett 
on the outskirts of our district. We decided to 
make a regular medical tour, visiting Parpana- 
pett in the natural order of the route. 

Departing from the compound in the bullock 
tonga, we passed the potter just outside our gates 
squatting before his wheel which he swiftly 
turned, shaping with deft hands the clay pot be- 
fore him. This scene brought to my mind, as it 



always did when I reflected on the souls of my 
dear Indian heathen, those comforting lines of 
Omar Khayyam's "Rubaiyat" : 

Some there are who tell 

Of one who threatens he will toss to Hell 

The luckless pots he marr'd in making — Pish! 

He's a good fellow and 'twill all be well. 

Two minutes later, we came to the massive 
gate in the old town wall of Medak and drove 
into the village, a typical village of India. The 
long, winding main street was lined with two 
rows of mud huts and crossed by narrow alleys, 
the uncovered sewage draining through street 
and alley. Brown monkeys jumped from house 
to house, the longest leap of a mother monkey 
disturbing not at all the baby clutching at her 
breast; and in the bazaar children, ponies, cows, 
buffaloes, donkeys, sheep, goats, dogs, cats, and 
hens commingled. 

It was market-day and the merchants of the 
bazaar had spread their wares so far toward the 
middle of the street on both sides that only 
skilled guidance of the bullocks saved the care- 
less vendors from ruin. Here and there a 
friend greeted us with a salaam; and gradually 
we wended our way around the hill with its old 
fort and temple and past the mosque where every 
morning at sunrise the Mahomedan priest cries 

J 2^ 


from the minaret his "Allah-il- Allah!" — "God is 
God and IMahomet is his prophet! Come to 
prayer! Come to prayer! Come to prayer! 
Prayer is better than sleep!" 

Then, out into the open country! 

Far and wide extended plantations of cocoa- 
nut palms with an earthern vessel fastened to 
each to catch the juice which, when fermented, 
serves as toddy, the Indian beer. A lithe, brown 
coolie was taking down the filled vessels. To 
climb a tree, he leaned back against a rope fast- 
ened about his waist and the tree and rapidly 
worked his way up by means of his toes and 

In an adjoining field, swinging their trunks 
and lazily munching their hay, were Dadu Bad- 
sha's two tame elephants. 

Beyond were castor-bean and mustard fields. 

In front of their ancestral tombs, in the old 
Mahomedan burial ground, several Mahomedans 

Here and there we saw the nest of the weaver 
bird swinging from a lofty branch. These nests 
are cleverly built and seem designed to protect 
the birds from snakes and other foes. A closely 
woven pyramid about a foot in length and de- 
pending by its apex from a branch swings loosely 
in the air. One side of the base forms a pouch 



where the bird may hatch her eggs, and the other 
side is lengthened into a cyHnder leading from 
space into the nest, thus forming an opening 
which could be entered only by a winged creature 
of small size. 

There were the usual fine old trees and the 
great heaps of boulders so common throughout 
this part of India; and always the green rice- 
fields, the white water-lilies, and the pink lotus 
flowers. We passed two or three droves of 
sturdy donkeys heavily laden; flocks of sheep and 
goats; springless wooden carts with their two 
rough wheels, each wheel a cross section of a 
tree trunk. Then we came to a lake of muddy 
water with the cattle rushing forward for a 
drink, and buffalo wallowing deep in the mire. 
A diver bird ran across our path; a ruined 
Hindu temple, relic of a thousand years ago, came 
to view; and, farther on, two or three bird 
scarers snug in their thatched towers carried out 
their unique, cobweb system. A rough straw 
shelter is built on a wooden platform raised high 
above the ground on four stout poles, smoothly 
polished to prevent snakes from climbing them. 
From this perch ropes extend in every direction, 
cobweb style, over the fields. Night and day a 
boy or girl sits on the perch to frighten away the 
thieving birds and beasts. In the daytime when 




birds only are the thieves, the child frightens 
them off by twitching the rope, and at night the 
little guardian of the hard-earned food shouts 
every now and then to keep the wild beasts away. 

But we were on the road. 

A chubby beggar boy ran behind the tonga 
slapping vigorously a well-rounded stomach, evi- 
dently trying to make us believe appearances de- 

A boy goatherd seated on a grassy knoll played 
on his pipe of reeds while he kept his goat from 
straying by clasping one of her hind feet firmly 
between the first and second toes of his right 

Down a steep incline our bullocks scumbled 
into the sandy bed of a river wh;th in rainy 
weather is the largest river in this section of 
the country. Toddy shops, toxWy shops every- 
w^here ! These are merely narrow roofs of thatch 
held up by poles and protecting the earthen pots 
of toddy and their keepers from the sun. 

A car of Juggernaut — a Hindu temple on 
wheels — stood under its cover at the foot of the 
hill. Years ago, the Juggernaut cars used to 
play an earnest and terrible part in the religious 
life of Hindus throughout India. Frequently 
during a procession some fanatic would throw 
himself beneath the w^heels of a car and be 



crushed to death. Though the cars still make 
occasional journeys, the English Government has 
forbidden the destruction of life, so the ceremony 
has lost to the Indian mind its chief attraction. 

Farther on was a queer little stone monkey 
god, Hanamanthadu. 

At Tardur, our first stopping place, the story 
had gone about that we had put a special drug 
in all the medicines to make those that should 
drink turn Christian, so only a few patients, and 
those timidly suspicious, came to us. We were, 
therefore, surprised when an old woman, her 
dark face all smiles and her tongue going at the 
rate of three hundred words a minute, rushed 
into the tent, and evidently overcome with joy 
or gratitude threw herself at our feet. By tact- 
ful questioning we learned that she was the 
mother of a Medak hospital patient whom a year 
previously we had cured of a serious illness. 

"Where is your daughter?" we asked. 

**She is coming but she is young and afraid. 
I will fetch her." So saying, the woman de- 
parted. An hour or two later she reappeared 
with the daughter, who shyly salaamed. 

"I have brought her," said the mother trium- 
phantly, "that she may kiss your feet. I have 
abused her all day that she has not come before. 



Why are you afraid of the kind white ladies?" 
turning to the girl angrily. 

"I am not afraid," replied the girl. "Why 
should I be afraid? Was I not in their hospital 
and did they not sit beside me and smile and hold 
my hand? No, I am not afraid," and, with eyes 
bulging from their sockets with terror, she 
dashed wildly through the tent door and away! 

When an aged man started to drink the medi- 
cine we had given him, his equally aged spouse 
hastily turned his head toward a little stone god- 
dess near by with the indignant remark, "How 
can you expect to be cured unless you turn your 
face toward the devil Poshamma and make sa- 
laams?" Miss Posnett, however, immediately 
took the medicine from him. 

"No," she said, "this medicine is the gift of 
Jesu Christie. You must make salaams to no 
other god while drinking it." 

The old man begged the medicine back and, 
gazing in terrified perplexity now at his wife and 
now at Miss Posnett, hastily gulped it down. 

While in Tardur, we examined our Christian 
school, composed of a dozen tots, true village 
children, who stood in a neat row and answered 
bravely — all but one. She, a girl of four years, 
seemed very bashful, restless and ill at ease, con- 
stantly getting out of line and hiding behind her 



elder sister, a sedate motherly child of seven, who 
as constantly pulled her back. Suddenly, in one 
of her dives behind her sister, the baby divested 
herself of her one garment, a diminutive red sari, 
and stood forth quite naked and smiling serenely, 
her self-consciousness completely gone with her 
unaccustomed garb. All of us except the sister 
of the youthful Eve laughed heartily. She — poor 
child! — shocked to the core of her being, hastily 
retreated with the culprit, who soon reappeared 
with the offending garment once more draped 
about her plump figure. 

Another move and we came to the village of 
Parpanapett, where our blind queen awaited us. 
There are, I feel sure, few villages in India love- 
lier than Parpanapett. It lies near a wide blue 
lake with rocky banks, the stone towers and high 
walls of the palace fortress and the rajah's gar- 
den, a paradise of bloom, forming a picturesque 

When we called on Her Highness she gra- 
ciously invited us to inspect the palace and, as 
her blindness prevented her from accompanying 
us, she sent one of her adopted sons instead. It 
was beautiful to see the reverence of these tall 
men for the frail old lady who has adopted them 
to fill, in some measure, the place of her dead 
son. Since the Rajah's death the palace has been 



given over to bats and other vermin. Only the 
zenana portion is inhabited, and we wandered 
through one desolate room after another; saw 
the exquisitely carved but worm-eaten chairs and 
tables, bed frames, and even an English bookcase ; 
groped our way up the narrow stone staircases; 
smashed our topees in the low doorways, and 
finally emerged into the tower, where we had an 
extensive view of the country. 

After the Parpanapett Rajah had died a cat- 
tle plague descended upon the village. You may 
not see the connection, but the villagers of Par- 
panapett saw it clearly enough and, dressing up 
a dummy to represent the dead Rajah, they daily 
sacrificed large numbers of sheep and goats be- 
fore him to satisfy his angry spirit. 

Our superintendent had joined us and in the 
evening after the medical day was over a re- 
ligious meeting was held. 

Some years before, our evangelist who had 
tried to preach Christianity in this village had 
been cruelly persecuted but by patience and cour- 
age had won the day and now his persecutors had 
come to be baptized. It was one of the most sol- 
emn and touching ceremonies I had ever wit- 

The gray-haired men, gathered courageously 
together, asked earnestly and intelligently about 



their duties as Christians, and listened carefully 
while Mr. Posnett explained to them how serious 
was the step they were taking. 

*'We are brothers in Christ," impressively said 
their chief, the erstwhile leader of the persecu- 
tion. "If we stand side by side and help each 
other to be strong, how can hatred or persecu- 
tion matter to us?" 

*'And you must try to bring your children to 
the feet of Christ," said Mr. Posnett. 

"Ha!" smiled one old man, "if the father be a 
Christian will the son dare be aught else?" 

The Lombardies, who had their camp near 
ours, were a source of never-failing interest to 
us, a multiplicity of pariah dogs helping them to 
keep up one continuous performance in motion 
and commotion. 

Young Lombardies are usually handsome and 
well developed. The dress of the women is com- 
posed of bits of cloth of every variety of color, 
sewed together after the manner and with the 
effect of a "crazy quilt," pieces of looking-glass 
and mica glistening from every part of their 
dress, while their large, coarse ornaments of iron, 
brass, bone, wood and precious metal make their 
every movement a loud jingling clank. Lom- 
bardy girls must have completed their entire cos- 
tume — no easy task — before they are married, 



and, if you have ever seen the costume, you can- 
not wonder that they rarely attempt a second. 
The rags and tatters to which a dress is reduced 
as its wearer approaches middle life merely add 
to the attractiveness. 

The gypsy folk are as shy as wood birds. Only 
death staring them directly in the face would 
coax them within the doors of a hospital. If 
they wish our medical treatment they make their 
home under a near-by tree, while we visit them 
there and minister to their needs. They are an 
industrious people. You never see a Lombardy 
sitting in the sun with listless hands, stopping to 
gossip for an hour at a village door, or begging 
for help. The tall, full figures are alive with en- 
ergy and independence. As a Lombardy woman 
walks through the streets, a great bundle of 
sticks is on her head and in her hands is sewing 
work on which she is busily engaged. It is not 
surprising, then, that the Lombardies are rarely 
poor. Almost every family owns large herds of 

Each year on one of their feast days, the 
Lombardy women come around to the bungalows 
and dance the famous "Lombardy dance," rising, 
bowing, bending sidewise and backward, squat- 
ting, swaying, all with admirable grace and 
rhythm; wizened, gray -haired women joining 



hands with handsome young girls and round- 
limbed children. 

At bedtime every night on this tour to Par- 
panapett we had our cots pulled out under the 
trees and, as we sank to sleep, we drowsily 
watched the glare of the camp fire on the dark 
faces surrounding it, for in the evening half the 
village comes to gossip with our people. 

So, picknicking outdoors for all our meals, 
and sleeping under the trees, with the Southern 
Cross blinking at us from the horizon, we trav- 
eled slowly homeward. 

As we neared Medak, we passed the Indian 
mail-carrier. Resting on his shoulder was a 
strong, pointed stick on which his bag of mail 
was slung; at the end of the stick a cluster of 
little bells jingled musically as he trotted along at 
a swift, steady pace, while immediately behind 
him at the same pace ran his guard with drawn 
sword in hand. 



THE famed Vale of Kashmir was our goal 
one year for the May rest, and the five 
English ladies and I went there together. 
At one of the stations where we made a long 
stop we had an opportunity to observe the details 
of a Mahomedan prayer. The bearded old man 
spread his rug before him, and, facing Mecca, 
began, in the light of the dying sun, his prayer 
to Allah. He touched his face rapidly here and 
there, now in front of the ears, now behind them ; 
placed his clasped hands together; made a low 
obeisance, touching his forehead to the ground 
several times ; stood or sat with hands on knees 
in the attitude of meditation; and so on through 
the whole time. Somebody came up and con- 
versed with him; but the interruption seemed a 
matter of small moment. After a leisurely chat, 
he continued his prayer as before. Then he 
rolled up his rug, tucked it under his arm, and 
walked slowly away. Noticing the time, I found 
that the prayer itself, not counting the interrup- 
tions, had taken just nine minutes. 



Three or four alligators sprawled on a sandy 
island in the almost dry river bed beneath the 
bridge over which our train passed. 

A herd of wild deer gazed innocently at us 
from a wood near the track, then turned and 
bounded swiftly into the brush. 

Grazing peacefully in a green field by the 
track was a herd of the small, hump-shouldered 
Indian cattle, with deer-like faces, resembling 
our Jerseys at home; the picturesque boy cow- 
herd in loin-cloth and turban shaded his eyes 
with his hand as he gazed at the passing train. 

In purple pajamas and red chuddah, an el- 
derly woman bent low over something she was 
gathering in a near-by field. She did not look up 
as the train passed. The signs of the times were 
naught to her! 

A young woman, clad in nothing but a loose 
red cloth fastened about her loins, balanced on 
her head the family water jar, her slim body 
swaying gracefully as she walked swiftly across 
the fields. 

A jackal trotted leisurely over the plain, 
turned to look at the train rushing toward him, 
and scampered away with curious, sidewise leaps. 

Up and down one of the platforms walked a 
group of Parsees. The gentleman of the party, 
in English dress except for his black, scuttle hat, 


Swing bridge of Kashmir 

Snake charmers and jugglers 


led by the hand a little girl whose rich, olive com- 
plexion and dark, liquid eyes, and the green 
gauze veil draped artistically about her head and 
shoulders, seemed altogether out of keeping with 
the white English frock, the long, white panta- 
lettes and the black shoes and stockings which 
formed the rest of her costume. The Parsee 
ladies wore soft silk saris of a delicate tint, with 
narrow, richly embroidered velvet border. The 
elder woman had the usual white cloth bound 
tightly about her head, this indicating that the 
wearer was married. 

A herd of slate-gray, sleepy-eyed buffalo, with 
horns three or four feet long standing out at 
right angles from their heads, trailed past. 

Then we were in the Punjaub, and we fre- 
quently saw a camel on the maidan, or an ele- 
phant trudging ajong the road with slow, ma- 
jestic tread. 

The people of the North, whose diet is wheat 
and pulse instead of rice, showed the effect of 
this better nourishment and of their colder, 
dryer climate in their fine physique and pride 
of carriage, as compared with our people on the 
Southern plains. 

Lahore, Kim's city ! And there were little Kims 
everywhere about the streets. Our guide showed 
us the points of interest, among them Zam- 



Zammah, Kim's big gun, which stood close 
to the Museum. We pictured Httle Kim hurling 
abuse down upon his playmates from the top of 
the huge cannon; and we turned to the Museum 
where the simple, mild old Lama found a sym- 
pathetic soul in the keeper of the "Wonder 
House" ; but the doors were locked and our train 
soon due, so we did not go inside. 

The last railway station on the way to Kash- 
mir is Rawal Pindi, and from there you have 
still before you one hundred miles of mountain 
road along the River Jhelum before you reach 
the Valley, rejoicing in a temperate climate at 
the height of fifty-five hundred feet above the 

Arranging for our baggage to follow us, we 
made the journey over the mountains in carriages. 

After two years on the hot plains, it was bliss 
to draw deep into the lungs the cool, life-giving 
air of the pines; to see the white clematis and 
hawthorn, the pink roses and sunny buttercups 
on every hand, the shy wild strawberries hiding 
their crimson among the grass by the way, and 
the dainty maidenhair fern covering the rocks 
in a lavish expenditure of riches. When the 
delicate fragrance of the wood violet greeted 
our nostrils, we were tempted from our car- 
riages for a short rest on the mossy banks be- 



side the road where the blue darlings were thickly 
scattered. Suddenly a patch of snow in the 
brush caught our eye, and we promptly indulged 
in an old-fashioned snowball fight. It was great 
fun, but our drivers were so frightened that 
their teeth chattered. They thought we w^ere in 
earnest, and begged us to make peace with each 
other, until, in mercy to the poor fellows, we 
gave it up, and our laughter, as we climbed back 
into the carriages, seemed greatly to relieve their 

We stopped for the night and for meals at the 
well-equipped dak bungalows all along the route, 
where frequently we met pleasant fellow- 

For four days we traveled through that mag- 
nificent mountain scenery where Feramorz won 
the heart of his Lalla Rookh. 

Hundreds of feet below our pathway the 
Jhelum River brawled and tumbled. Far above 
us the snow mountains stood out against the sky 
hemming us in on every side until, as we gazed 
at them, w^e felt chilled and awed by their so- 
lemnity, but the golden bird-songs from the 
meadow told us of warm, throbbing life, and we 
turned again to the flowers and the butterflies. 

An immense drove of camels coming down 
from the Khyber Pass met us one day. Some of 



the camels were wee babies and the funniest, 
fuzziest Httle fellows imaginable. 

There also met us a party of big, rough-look- 
ing Afghanese, with peaked turbans and long 
coats, and several groups of those polyandrous 
mountain people in whose family the woman 
reigns supreme, like a queen bee, over her half- 
dozen husbands. 

We were lunching in a grove on the way when 
a pack of great, white pariah dogs rushed to- 
ward us. Leaping, growling, fighting, they sav- 
agely snatched the bread from our hands and 
from the basket beside us. We did not argue 
the point, but hastily left the scene and the rem- 
nants of the lunch. 

Toward the end of our route, the long-haired 
Kashmir goats appeared, balancing on sharp 
pinnacles or jumping fearlessly from crag to 

On the mountains along the way we frequently 
saw signs of human life, bazaars to tempt the 
traveler, villages with the ever-present fort, and 
old mosques and temples which I could with 
pleasure have examined more closely. 

So we rode on until the mountain pass gave 
way to the broad and verdant plain, and we left 
our carriages for the dhiinga which our Srinagar 
hostess had sent to meet us. 


Kashmiri women 


A dliunga is a large, flat boat of old walnut 
wood beautifully hand carved in all sorts of in- 
tricate designs, with roof and sides of matting. 
Sometimes the boatman and his family put them- 
selves into harness and trudge along the bank, 
dragging the dhunga by ropes; sometimes they 
all get inside and paddle it slowly along by means 
of a peculiar oar — a long handle and a heart- 
shaped blade. 

Within the dhiinga there is every comfort for 
the traveler, a tiny suite of rooms, dining room, 
bedroom, dressing room and bathroom, and an 
open space in front for a sitting room. Each 
of these rooms is shut off by matting curtains, 
and back of all the boatman and his family live. 

This was our first view of the natives of Kash- 
mir, people who well deserve their reputation 
for physical beauty. The large, well-knit fig- 
ure, the clear, olive skin, with damask rose show- 
ing on the cheeks, and the handsome Jewish 
features seem to speak of superiority in every 
way ; but, alas ! they have been for so many cen- 
turies a subject people, that now, mentally and 
morally, they have only a quickness at repartee 
and a cringing good nature to recommend them. 

The costume of both men and women consists 
of a number of loose, long coats with full sleeves. 
In cool weather they pile on extra coats and help 



the warming process by tying about the waist 
under their clothing a kangra (a clay, basket- 
covered pot) full of live coals. 

The women and girls wear a great deal of 
cheap, showy jewelry, and arrange their hair in 
numberless thin plaits, tying all the plaits to- 
gether at the end with a narrow, black ribbon 
which hangs almost to the ground. 

The Kashmiris have the praiseworthy custom 
of washing themselves and their clothes occa- 
sionally — once every six months by strict com- 
pulsion of the Government. 

Peasants of Kashmir address every white 
person as "Huzoor" (Your Highness). This was 
a custom unknown to me when I asked our boat- 
man what I should call the sweeper or refuse- 
carrier, one of a class which, throughout India, 
are outcast of the outcastes. 

"Htizoorf" inquired the boatman, meaning, 
"I beg your pardon, what did you say?" 

*'0h, 'Husoor/ is it?" I said, quite satisfied, 
and for many days I continued, in my ignorance, 
to address the poor menial as "Your Highness." 

The dJiiinga bore us along down the river, out 
through Wular Lake, the largest lake in India, 
and wonderfully beautiful in its perfect tran- 
quillity with the brilliant reflections of the snow 
mountains in its depths, on to the river again, 



and so to Srinagar, where we found our house- 

Place the rooms of a summer cottage end to 
end, mount them on a carved walnut barge, place 
a veranda on top of all, and you have a Kash- 
mir houseboat. 

Most of the European visitors in Srinagar live 
in such houseboats and move about the city — a 
real Venice of the Orient — by means of graceful 
little shikarras (native rowboats). 

Obtaining the necessary permit from the Resi- 
dent to remain in Kashmir for a time, we sur- 
rendered ourselves to a life of "sweet do-nothing- 
ness" in that love-haunted and loveliest of vales, 

With its roses the brightest that earth ever gave, 
Its temples, and grottos, and fountains as clear 
As the love-lighted eyes that hang over their wave. 



AGAIN our train sped toward Medak and 
work and reality ! 

Our first stop on the homeward 
journey was at Amritsar, the "City of the Sikhs." 

Before we entered the Golden Temple, 
cloth shoes were tied over the "unholy" leather 
of our footgear, and in these we "galumphed" 
about and saw the "sights." 

Day and night, one priest or another drones 
out the sacred words of the "Granth" before an 
ever-burning lamp. It was a peaceful sight^ 
the disciples, the youth of the Sikhs, seated about 
the old, white-haired priest, listening to the words 
as they fell from his lips, while the temple doves 
helped themselves to the wheat spread out on 
the floor as an offering to the gods, or in friendly 
fashion took the grains from our hands. 

The Sikh costume seemed to me the most manly 
in India. The lower garment made of thin, white 
cloth in the form of trousers, short and full and 
falling to the knee, impressed me more favorably 



than the effeminate flowing dhoti or the long 
skirt. The Sikhs never cut the hair or beard, 
and usually wear about the turban the chekram, 
a steel ring or quoit, thin, flat, and razor-sharp, 
which they can throw, when occasion requires, 
with deadly skill. 

A good-natured 03-0/^ in charge of the wait- 
ing-room at the Amritsar station brought us our 
tea. As she placed the tray with its tempting con- 
tents before us, she wiped her well-oiled hair and 
sweat-bedewed face with her broad, brown hands, 
exclaiming, "Very hot. Missy Sahib!" Then, 
before we could prevent her, she seized a slice 
of the delicately browned toast and, crushing it 
in her hand, held it out toward Miss Richardson, 
asking innocently: "You liking toast, Missy 
Sahib? You eating toast?" 

"Well, not now," replied Miss Richardson, 
whom fever and the intense heat had left with 
little appetite in any event, and, turning white 
about the mouth, she suddenly left the room, 
while the ayah looked after her in amazement. 

A few stations farther on Miss Richardson 
and I left the rest of our party and went some- 
what out of our way to visit Lucknow and Cawn- 
pore, the cities that suffered most in the great 
Mutiny of 1857. 



At Lucknow we engaged an ekka to take us 
to the ruined Residency. 

An ekka is the queerest little cart imaginable 
— a small wooden platform on two wheels, with a 
canopy for a top and drawn by a single horse. 
On the wooden platform one must sit cross- 
legged like the Indians, or let the feet hang down 
over the wheel, as the English usually prefer to 
do. So, holding our skirts away from the wheels 
as best we might, we rattled and jounced merrily 
along to our destination. 

The buildings are a mass of vine-covered ruins 
full of great holes and gashes where for five, 
long, heart-breaking months the ''millions of 
musket bullets and thousands of cannon balls" 
poured in unceasingly. 

We climbed to the "topmost roof" where all 
through the siege the "banner of England blew." 
The flag of England still flies on the mended flag- 
staff. As fast as worn out, it is replaced by a 
new one, and always floats proudly over the ruins 
below, the only flag of the British Empire that 
is never lowered. 

We heard again the story of Jessie Brown, the 
Scotch girl, how she had dreamed she heard 
the pibroch and prophesied the immediate coming 
of Sir Colin Campbell and his Highlanders, and 
how that very day the pibrochs really sounded 



and a loud cheer from the earthworks told that 
Sir Colin had arrived. 

We saw the gap in the wall caused by the 
bomb which ended the life of the brave and be- 
loved commander, Sir Henry Lawrence, and out- 
side the great white marble cross that marks his 
resting-place. On it are inscribed the words 
which he himself requested for his epitaph: 

Here lies Henry Lawrence who tried to do his duty. 

May the Lord have mercy on his soul ! 
Bom 28th of June, 1806. Died 4th of July, 1857. 

Leaving the Residency, we visited several 
other buildings, all vibrant with memories of the 
siege; looked with interest on the Bailey Guard 
Gate held so bravely by Lieutenant Aitken and 
his loyal Sepoys; gave a few coins to the totter- 
ing old Indian bJiisti (water-carrier) who had 
been the bhisti at the time of the siege, and 
dashed away to the station with barely time to 
catch the train for Cawnpore. 

On reaching Cawnpore, we lost no time in 
driving out to see the "Angel." 

Poor Cawnpore of tragic memory ! A place of 
memories only, the smiling green of to-day hid- 
ing all traces of the bloody, pitiless carnage 
enacted there fifty years ago! 

We strolled leisurely about, inspecting Maro- 
chetti's beautiful white marble statue which 



stands above the well where the bodies of the 
British women and children were thrown. In 
front of a cross the angel stands, looking down- 
ward, her arms folded on her breast and the 
palm branch of martyrdom in each hand, the 
tender peace of her face seeming to banish all 
hatred against the perpetrators of the deed which 
she commemorates. On the pedestal an inscrip- 
tion reads: 

Sacred to the perpetual memory of the great com- 
pany of Christian people, chiefly women and chil- 
dren, who, near this spot, were cruelly massacred 
by the followers of the rebel Nana Doondoo Panth, 
of Bithoor, and cast, the dying and the dead, into 
the well below, on the 15th day of July, 1857. 

An octagonal Gothic screen surrounds the 

statue, and over the arched entrance are the 

words : 

"These are they which came out of great tribu- 

Outside this screen is a circle of cypress trees, 
and the whole is in a wide park rich with verdure. 

We were charmed and awed by the beauty 
and solemnity of it all, but the intense heat and 
glare of noonday soon made us long for the 
shelter of our carriage. Our driver, being an 
Indian, was, by the city laws, forbidden the 
grounds, so we had told him to wait for us at 



the gate. We walked quickly back to the gate, 
but the carriage had vanished. Calling loudly, 
we waited. Minute after minute went by, but 
there was no sign of the driver or his vehicle, 
and we never again saw either. Not knowing 
which way to turn, for we had been too busy 
with the sights of the city to notice our route 
from the station, we asked several of the 
passers-by where we might find a carriage, but 
all replied in the same apathetic voice and with 
a shrug of stupid indifference, "A carriage? 
How should I know where you can get a car- 
riage?" Then we asked: "Where is the railway 
station?" And the answer came with the same 
shrug: ''The railway station? How should I 
know where it is?" So we turned back into the 
garden to wait, hoping our driver might return. 
In circling about we lost our bearings, and, try 
as we might, could not find the entrance again. 
After a half-hour of fruitless search I spied a 
drain-hole under the fence. It was dry and 
choked with dead leaves, but, by pushing the 
leaves away, there was room for a person to 
squeeze through, and, lying flat on our faces, we 
did so. Rising and brushing the dust from our 
clothes, we found ourselves in a strange street, 
and looked up and down in vain for a white 



It was the hottest part of the day in the hot- 
test month of the year in the hottest city of all 
hot India. Miss Richardson's eyes and cheeks 
were flushed with fever, and when we espied 
a wayside pump we almost ran toward it. A 
copious draught of water seemed not to allay 
in the least our thirst. Time and again we left 
the pump only to return to it before we had gone 
a hundred yards away, drinking deeply each time, 
until I felt quite prepared for the old Chinese 
form of execution. (Man filled with water — 
board across stomach — two other men jumping 
on board — result evident!) But something had 
to be done beyond the drinking of water unless 
we wished to perish with sunstroke. 

**Ah !" I exclaimed suddenly, ''there is a chim- 
ney and smoke. That means a factory, and a 
factory means a white man. Ship ahoy!" and 
we hurried toward the blessed smokestack, my 
chest swelling with pride at my Sherlock Holmes 
deduction. Arrived at the smokestack, we found 
it surrounded by a high board fence and on the 
gate in large black letters, "No Admittance." 
Much we cared for signs and symbols just then. 
We pushed the gate open with bold hand and 
marched in. 

''Sahib half" (Is the master in?), I asked of 
an astonished Indian. 



"Hai" (He is in) was the laconic response. 

"We would see him." So we were led into a 
large, comfortable-looking office, where at the 
desk sat a middle-aged English gentleman with 
a kindly face. Two hours under the fierce noon- 
day sun had quite upset my nerves, and I could 
have wept for joy on the man's neck, but, for- 
tunately for him, restrained myself. He heard 
our story, immediately ordered iced water for 
us, and sent for a carriage. Conversing pleas- 
antly under the cool punkah, we drank the de- 
licious water, and by the time our carriage ar- 
rived felt quite refreshed. As we rode along in 
its grateful shelter, we admitted that we had 
for once known the full force of Tennyson's 
"heat like the mouth of a hell." 

The thought of anything except the open air 
on such a day was intolerable, so we continued 
our sight-seeing. 

At the ghat, where the treacherous river mas- 
sacre took place, a memorial temple is in charge 
of an old Indian who receives a pension from the 
British Government. He said he had witnessed 
the whole tragedy, and told us of that terrible 
day on the river. With tears streaming down 
his face he exclaimed: "It was not the Sahibs 
nor the Mem Sahibs, but the baba log (children). 



Oh, the baba log! I could not bear it!" And he 
hid his wrinkled old face in his hands. 

A handsome memorial church stands over the 
site of the pitiful little fort where for three 
weeks, in a temperature ranging from 130 to 
140 degrees Fahrenheit all day, three hundred 
starving, poorly armed British men, fighting with 
the mad courage of desperation, the sight of their 
helpless wives and little ones goading them on, 
kept at bay more than three thousand Sepoys, 
well fed, having abundant ammunition, and fight- 
ing at two or three hundred yards' distance from 
behind bullet-proof defenses. 

In this memorial church we saw the colored 
sketch, made by an English artist a few days 
after the tragedy, of the room in the Bibi Ghar 
where the traitorous miscreant, Nana Sahib, 
caused the slaughter of the women and children. 
Clotted blood lay deep on the floor; saber-cuts 
showed low down on the walls; bloody finger- 
stains were everywhere; the children's quaint, 
old-fashioned bonnets, shoes and socks, blood- 
stained and torn, mingled with broken combs and 
toys, torn pages from books, and strands of hair. 
All the signs of that fearful confusion were de- 
picted, and brought the scene so vividly before 
us that we felt sick and faint with horror. 

At the station dinner we became engaged in 


conversation with an elderly man who had been 
a soldier under Havelock and had seen the dread- 
ful room in Bibi Ghar shortly after the massacre. 
He had a genial smile and a pleasant, courtly 
manner for us, but he seemed unable to address 
the Indian waiters in anything but harsh, per- 
emptory tones. As he spoke of the Cawnpore 
events of '57, his eyes flashed hatred and he 
seemed as bitter about the Mutiny as if it had 
occurred last week. 

*'The dogs! The devils! The lying, thieving 
rats! I hate every one of them! I'll never for- 
give them! Don't you trust them! They'll do 
you every time." 

The shadow of the Peace Angel's wings had 
not fallen across his wounded spirit. 

From the day's stifling heat, the temperature 
had dropped to a delightful coolness, and after 
dinner we started out for a walk. The streets 
were full of soldiers, for a large British fort is 
at Cawnpore. English "Tommies" swung jaunt- 
ily along, with tiny, round caps over their ears; 
great, brawny Highlanders strolled by in short 
trousers of plaid and the bonnet of the Scot; 
and now and then a gaily dressed British officer 
dashed past us on a handsome, well-groomed 
horse. It was fascinating, the city with its bril- 
liant lights and busy life; and still more fasci- 



nating was the sudden change to the wide fields 
and quiet roads of the country, where the gentle 
rustle of the trees and the occasional soft chirp 
of a restless bird were all that broke the silence 
of the calm and shadow-subdued moonlight. 

The ambient air with Unseen Things was stirred. 
And the low music of the moving trees 
Sang to the heart. The penetrating stars 
And the majestic mistress of the night — 
Fair, silver-sandaled moon — on her slow way 
Across the spacious sky looked down between 
The boughs that parted to the passing breeze, 
Perfumed with breath of blossom and of rose. 
Of aloe and acacia trees in bloom. 
And all the pungent odors of the night. 


THE echoes of the Western slogan, "Votes 
for Women!" have not reached India. 
A middle-aged woman came to our 
hospital bruised and bleeding from a beating she 
had received at the hands of her husband. She 
stated simply the cause of her wounds and asked 
medicine for them, while her husband, apparently 
unashamed, stood beside her, joining her in the 
request for "good medicine." When I took her 
into another room to apply the dressing, I asked 
indignantly : "Do you Indian women not feel bit- 
terly humiliated and resentful when your hus- 
bands beat you thus?" 

The woman gazed at me in surprise. 

"Why, certainly not," she replied. "How else 
should we learn wisdom?" 

No such reactionary spirit imbued the girl of 
Nandagaon, a Christian woman whose case was 
tried at court because she had deserted her hus- 
band and two-months-old baby. As we were 
touring at Nandagaon at the time of her trial, 
the patel invited us to be present. 



Under a huge banyan tree the villagers had 
gathered, the judge, with the other chief officials, 
sitting on a bench, where we were asked to join 

The prisoner, a pretty girl of sixteen, who had 
been brought in from the fields to meet her ac- 
cusers, stood in the center of the group, her sickle 
in her hand and her red sari girt tightly around 
her shapely thighs. 

"Let the prisoner speak!" shouted the judge, 
and everybody was silent, while the girl, throw- 
ing back her proud little head, made her plea 
in a clear, defiant voice. 

"My husband and I became Christians. Then 
all the village people taunted me with cruel 
words. When I went to the village well for 
water, the other women pushed me away, crying: 
'Don't touch our well! Don't come near our 
houses!' When I took my baby into the street 
they cried: 'You have brought the curses of the 
gods on the head of your son. Don't let your foul 
shadow rest on us! You are defiled!' I told 
my husband. He said : 'Heed them not ! Bear it 
patiently!' Could I bear it? Could I? No. I 
begged my husband to take me to some village 
where there were other Christians, but he said 
he could not leave his work here. The women's 
curses rang day and night in my ears till they 



set my heart on fire. I could not bear it. I ran 

The girl stopped, and a clamor of voices broke 
forth. Discipline there was none. Now and then 
could be heard the judge's voice: "Wait! Wait! 
Let me speak 1" But nobody paid the least atten- 
tion until each man had decided in his own mind 
and bad informed his neighbors what he thought 
should be done in the case. When at last the 
loud shouts had died to murmurs, the judge 
spoke : 

"Your husband, at the advice and with the 
help of the kind English people, will settle in 
another town among Christians. Will you go 
back to him?" 

"If I can go back and be told that I have done 

no wrong, yes. Otherwise " and a defiant 

gesture ended her sentence. 

"But your husband will have to beat you a 
little that you may not do this wrong again," 
said the judge. 

"Then no!" shouted the girl. "I will not go 

"Well, well," broke in the husband mildly, "we 
could perhaps let the beating go this time. The 
babe needs his mother's care. Come home, 
woman" — he seized his wife's hand — "and I 
promise not to beat you." 



So they walked off together, and the court ad- 

The almost complete ignorance of the Indian 
woman enslaves her to the men of her family. 

Mr. Posnett called one day on a high-caste 
Hindu prince, and, while they talked together, 
the princess, his wife, entered the room. Placing 
on the floor a basin of water she had brought, 
she knelt down and washed her husband's feet. 
When she had finished, she raised the basin to 
her lips and drank some of the water. Through- 
out the whole ceremony the husband seemed ut- 
terly unconcerned. When asked the meaning 
of the act, he answered simply, "That? Oh, she 
does that every day. For a devout and faithful 
Hindu wife it is one road to paradise." 

It was in the cool of sunset when we led the 
mild-faced wife of a Mahomedan official of 
Medak up to the flat roof of the hospital to enjoy 
the lake breezes. 

"Ah!" she exclaimed, gazing with wondering 
delight on the scene about her, "the only outdoor 
air I get is in our own courtyard. I remember 
the trees of my childhood home, but these I have 
never seen before, nor this lake, though for many 
years I have lived within a few rods of them. 
You English ladies should be very grateful for 
your liberty. Even when we go abroad into the 



streets our men carry us about like birds in a 
cage, only they put a curtain over the cage/* 

Hamed, an Arab boy of eight years, with 
pleading eyes and girlish features, had been for 
two years unable to walk owing to an injury of 
his leg. His mother, carrying him on her hip, 
brought him to our hospital, and after an opera- 
tion and weeks of treatment, he left us proudly 
showing us how easily he could run down the 

A few days later his mother came to the dis- 
pensary door, and I immediately asked, ''How is 

"Oh," she replied, "the darling boy is well, 
quite well, and runs about like other children. 
This noon I did not prepare his dinner soon 
enough to suit him and he chased me all about the 
house, beating me with a big stick. See!" and 
she showed me great blue and bleeding welts on 
her arms and legs, "Hamed made these, and for 
these I have now come to get soothing medicine." 

In the Orient, masculine supremacy runs rife 
through the veins of even the infant man-child. 
A woman came into the dispensary leading by 
the hand a boy of perhaps five years. When I 
had heard her story and offered her medicine 
to drink she shrank back, but her small son, in 
the most imperious manner possible, pulled at 



her san\ exclaiming, "What! You won't drink! 
Sit down here at once and drink the medicine as 
the Doctor Mem Sahib tells you to!" As she 
obediently squatted down, he stood beside her 
with uplifted hand and threatened, "Hi, hi! 
Drink, I tell you!" until every drop was drained. 

From this you will see that the author of an 
article in a leading magazine at home had seen 
little of Indian home life when he wrote that 
the child who could say "Shut up !" to its parents 
had never been "conceived or conceived of" in 
India. Not only "Shut up!" but the foulest lan- 
guage and emphasizing kicks and blows from 
child to both mother and father are everyday 
occurrences. On the whole, I cannot imagine 
any children less controlled than those of India. 
After the children are grown, however, there are 
an attractive reverence and duti fulness to the 
parents unusual in the West. To marry against 
a parent's command, to resent physical punish- 
ment, even though the receiver far exceed the 
giver in size, or to grumble against the burden 
of an aged and childish parent, would be, I 
should say, quite foreign to the East Indian. 

The ignorance of the Indian woman also 
makes her childlike in many ways. A doll is 
caressed as warmly by the mother of several 
children as if one of her own babies were in her 



arms, and in many an Indian home, Mahomedan 
or Hindu, you will find the grown women playing 
happily with toy furniture or toy dishes. 

We were frequently invited to a doll's wed- 
ding. At one we attended, the small boy of the 
house was espoused to the doll-bride with all the 
ceremonies and general festivities of a real wed- 
ding. A great feast was given and large sums 
of money were spent. When we asked to see 
the bride, the mistress of the house remonstrated 
with shocked face. ''Why, don't you know that 
the bride is in gosJia and must look on no face 
but that of her husband?" We told her she 
could grant us our wish by telling the doll-bride 
to keep her eyes down, so she smilingly led us 
into an inner apartment. 

On a small dais, a bit of cloth shaped some- 
what like a woman had been placed in a sitting 
posture. It was dressed in the correct bridal 
costume — magenta chuddah, crimson velvet pa- 
jamas, and green and yellow silk coat. In the 
center of what purported to be its face, a loop of 
thread held a tiny brass nose-ring; and its neck 
and arms and feet were hung with tiny jewels. 

Among the many unhappy Mahomedan wives 
was one who came to our hospital begging treat- 
ment for an acute earache which had kept her 
awake for three nights. When I suggested that 



she stay in hospital and have the ear properly 
treated, she replied: "I will come again, but I 
cannot stay now. I have given my husband no 
children, so he is marrying another woman. He 
brings her home to-day, and I must go and 
make the house ready and prepare the wedding 

It is surprising, though, in what harmony 
these co-wives often live. In a case in the vil- 
lage a second wife had a very bad time after 
childbirth, and her most tender, devoted nurse 
was the first wife who had been discarded for 
the usual reason — lack of children. Again, when 
a slave girl, one of our patients in the village, 
bore her master a son and nearly died in con- 
vulsions, the master's wife was a mother to her 
throughout. Frequently, when you ask a woman 
carrying a child on her hip, "Is this your own 
child ?" she replies : '*No, it is the child of my hus- 
band's other wife, but I love it as my own." 

Ratnamma, a young Brahman woman, was a 
patient in our hospital when I first came to 
Medak. One night she smiled at me so brightly 
that I said to an interpreter : "Tell her that her 
face is full of sunshine." 

"Why not?" responded Ratnamma. "Great 
joy has come to me to-day." Then, yielding to 
her quiet urging, I sat beside her on her bed, 

1 60 


and — a nurse interpreting her words to me — 
heard her story, the first part of which was al- 
ready familiar to me. 

At seventeen years of age she had given birth 
to the bonny boy who, as she told her tale, lay 
asleep in her arms. When the baby came the ig- 
norant midwife had injured Ratnamma so that 
her husband refused to live with her, and, as is 
the custom in Hindu life, cast her out from his 
home. As Ratnamma's family was rich and 
noble, she did not suffer privation, but the re- 
proaches heaped upon her, as upon all husband- 
less women of India, made her life miserable. 
Then came a message from her husband: 

"I shall soon wed another woman, and when 
our son shall be weaned I shall take him from 

Then was Ratnamma panic-stricken. As no 
hakim could help her, she turned in despair and 
with scant faith to the despised Christians. Dr. 
Watts operated and completely cured her dis- 
ability, and Ratnamma sent the good news to 
her husband. 

"And to-day," she added, "he has come to me 
loving and tender as of old and wishes to take 
me and my babe back to his home. Should not 
my face reflect the sunshine in my soul ?" 



Women of India — wives, mothers, widows — 
my heart bleeds for you ! 

Even the proverbs of India teach hatred and 
contempt for women. Here are one or two of the 
many : 

*'What is cruel? The heart of a viper. What 
is more cruel? The heart of a woman. What is 
the most cruel of all? The heart of a soulless, 
penniless widow." 

"He is a fool who considers his wife as his 

"Educating a woman is like putting a knife 
into the hands of a monkey." 

When a girl is born a wail goes up from the 
entire village who have been anxiously waiting 
for a boy, and curses and reproaches are heaped 
on the innocent infant head. Should you at such 
a time ask the parents if a child had been born 
to them, they would reply: "A child? No, it is 
only a girl !" 

In former generations girl infants were mur- 
dered on the slightest pretext — because of a 
divine injunction ; because of a superstitition that 
a girl baby murdered would return to earth a 
boy; because women, generally thought useless 
and expensive, were better out of the world; or 
because poverty would prevent the giving of a 
suitable marriage portion. 



The baby is married, often to a man of middle 
age, and long before her half -grown body is pre- 
pared, she is brutally compelled to begin her mar- 
ital duties, and, when yet in her own childhood, 
she becomes, at the peril of her fragile life, the 
mother of a necessarily fragile child. 

If, through overwhelming misfortune, the 
girl's husband die, her sins in some former ex- 
istence are supposed to be the cause of his death, 
and because of this she is an accursed thing. 
Even though but a babe and knowing nothing 
of the dead husband, she is, at an early age, 
stripped of all ornament, and put in the coarsest 
raiment, while her head is shaved close and kept 
that way. Despised, spat upon, cruelly over- 
worked, starved, beaten, neglected in illness, for- 
saken even by those nearest of kin to her, the 
child passes her days in abject terror and despair, 
until death, usually not long delayed, blessedly 
releases her. 

When a child is about to be born the expectant 
mother is thrust into the cowshed or into the hot- 
test, closest room and the darkest and dirtiest 
in the house, to await her trial, and her life and 
the life of her unborn child are entrusted to the 
ignorant wife of the low-caste barber. With 
foul instruments she intrudes on nature's honest 
efforts, often when nature needs no assistance. 



When need for assistance does arise, God pity the 
poor victim of the midwife's malpractice! The 
heartless brutality used is not a fit subject for 
print. It is enough to say that in such cases the 
babe often loses its life; the mother nearly al- 
ways. It is customary in India to ask when one 
hears of the birth of a child: "Did the mother 

A slender little girl of ten was brought to the 
hospital by her husband, a tall, muscular man of 
forty. The child shrank piteously from the man, 
who held her firmly by the wrist, and she seemed 
overjoyed to leave him for our nurse, who led 
her into the examining room. When I learned 
that the merciless brute, transgressing even the 
lax Indian ideas of decency and justice, had com- 
pelled the consummation of marriage and had 
injured his child-wife so seriously that only a 
grave operation could restore her health, I felt 
like shouting aloud to all the women of the happy 
Western world to help me crush the evil system 
responsible for the soul-sickening condition of the 
little patient before me. 

Scarcely able to control my indignation, I re- 
turned to the husband and bade him "listen to 
my words of wisdom." 

"Do you wish a son?" I asked. That struck 
the right chord, and he replied: "Does not every 



man wish for that more than for aught else?" 
"Then hear me!" and I proceeded to tell him 
simply and frankly why he was defeating his 
own object. When I had repeated and re- 
peated my arguments, I had partly convinced 
his asinine brain — no, not "asinine," that were 
an insult to the worthy ass — that I was right, 
and he promised to show consideration for the 
helpless child in his power and to let her remain 
at our hospital for a time. 

There is a hamlet about five minutes' walk 
from our compound where Brahmans only are 
allowed to live, and where there is a sacred bath- 
ing-well. In that settlement a wife of fourteen 
years was expecting immediate motherhood. 
Something was not right; there was alarming 
delay; and all the wisdom of the midwife and of 
the old men and Vv^omen had been called upon to 
furnish help in the dilemma. As is usual in such 
cases, a ring of children, among wh*om were of 
necessity two boys bearing the names Rama (one 
of the names of Vishnu, God of Preservation) 
and Lakshmanna (the masculine form of Lak- 
shmi, Vishnu's wife), encircled the well, and a 
brass bowl filled with the sacred water was passed 
from one child's hand to another's until it had 
gone the round three times. Meanwhile the suf- 
fering girl had been brought to the well and the 



boy Rama handed the water to her to drink. 
Even this charm failed; so at last they all ad- 
mitted it would be wise to seek help from the 

I was asleep in my cot on the veranda when 
a man's voice aroused me, 

*Tlease come quickly, Honorable Doctor Lady" 
— and the matter was explained to me. 

In a moment I was ready and the messenger 
and I were on our way, when we met another man 
who told us there was no need of my services 
for the child was born and all was well. I went 
back to bed and heard nothing more of the case 
until five o'clock the following afternoon. Then 
a messenger came in haste and said that a lie had 
been told me the preceding night; that the child 
had not been born, but that they had wished to 
try, without my interference, another "trick," 
which was that a man should go quietly behind 
the patient's head without her knowledge and 
suddenly discharge a shotgun close to her ear. 
The "trick" had been carried out — the messenger 
continued — the dead child had been instantly 
born, and the young mother had screamed with 
pain for many minutes and then had gone into 
convulsions. When I arrived on the scene the 
patient was rapidly passing from one convulsion 
into another, and I saw instantly, and told the 



people, that the poor girl had been done to death. 

I stayed by her side until dawn, when her spirit 

took its flight from her tortured body. 

My God, can such things be ! 
Hast Thou not said that whatsoe'er is done 
Unto Thy weakest and Thy humblest one 
Is even done to Thee? 



A WILD beast scare had stirred the whole 
district. In villages bordering on 
Medak three babies had been eaten by 
tigers. A leopard seized a sleeping boy and 
began to drag him to the woods. The boy's 
screams roused his father, who caught him by 
the legs and fought madly with the leopard for 
possession of the child. At last the screams of 
both father and son frightened the beast, and, 
letting go its hold, it fled. The boy's face was 
torn completely through from mouth to ear, and 
his father brought him to our dispensary at Sur- 
janna, where Miss Posnett sewed up the wound, 
which healed nicely. 

As Miss Tombleson and I strolled along the 
Ramyanpett road one day, a wolf came out and 
stood in front of us, looked us over calmly, and 
walked away again. 

A few days later there was great excitement in 
the compound. One of our missionaries had 
seen a wolf sneak behind the cook-house, where, 

1 68 


lying about in the hot night air, babies galore 
slept peacefully beside their mothers. The crea- 
ture escaped before it could be shot and for- 
tunately no harm was done. The wolf stories 
told by the people are most thrilling, and truly 
the beast has an ugly way of hunting. Finding 
an infant beside its mother, it creeps up in the 
dead of night and slowly and stealthily rolls the 
child away from its protector. Then the sharp 
fangs meet in the little throat, there is a quickly 
stifled cry, and the mother wakes to see her babe 
in the jaws of the wolf as he leaps away into 
the darkness. So the wolves, because of the 
secrecy of their attack, have come to be more 
dreaded than even the man-eating tiger. 

Within a few days the wolf that had visited 
our compound came again, and fortunately one 
of the English gentlemen saw it in time and 
killed it with one shot. Then the people, wild 
with exultation, danced and sang and shouted for 
hours around the gaunt, gray body. 

Two of our missionaries returning from Ram- 
yanpett reported that a leopard had followed the 
bandy for some distance, leaving at last on the 
track of wild deer which had just gone on in 

That was about the fifth time a leopard had 
been seen by our people on the Ramyanpett Road; 



and one night a half-grown leopard sprang over 
our hospital wall and nearly drove the helpless 
nurses into nervous prostration by sleeping till 
the dawn in a vacant bed on the veranda. 

It was after all this that I saw for the first 
time a wild leopard in his native haunts. 

We were driving along the Ramyanpett Road, 
one of our pet terriers running behind the tonga. 
Suddenly the driver brought the bullocks to a 
halt, and, pointing to the bushes at the side of 
the road, whispered : "A leopard !" True enough ! 
There in the grass, scarcely ten yards ahead of 
us, crouched the savage beauty, his head lowered 
and his eyes almost closed as he gazed fixedly 
at us. 

I softly called the terrier to me, and, holding 
him fast in my arms, we waited, the driver's eyes 
and mine never leaving that mass of spotted vel- 
vet in front of us, until fully fifteen minutes had 
passed, when the leopard, doubtless tired of our 
monotonous standstill, deliberately rose to his 
feet, and, with an occasional bound from rock to 
rock, trotted slowly ofif into the deeper wood. 

We frequently found cobras and other poison- 
ous snakes in the bungalows. As I came out of 
my dressing room one day, a slight movement 
startled me, and there, not three feet away, a 
half-grown cobra was writhing. When I started 



at sight of him he raised his head, spread wide 
his hood, and darted his tongue at me with a 
warning hiss. I did not stop to cultivate his ac- 
quaintance further, but rushed out and sent the 
servants to kill him. When they arrived, how- 
ever, he had escaped. 

A cobra had to be chased out of the girls' 
schoolyard before they could begin afternoon ses- 
sion; and another cobra came, an uninvited 
guest, to Miss Tombleson's prayer-meeting for 
the coolie women. In the midst of the crude at- 
tempts at hymn singing and of the howls of the 
babies — a coolie woman always has a babe in 
arms — one of the women shrieked and stared at 
the ceiling. Following her gaze, the others looked 
up and there hung a cobra with a dead rat in 
his mouth. The weight of the rat seemed too 
much for the snake ; he dropped his burden among 
the women, followed it, striking the floor with a 
thud, and then, himself thoroughly frightened, 
writhed swiftly down the steps and out of sight 
under the stones. 

One market day as I stood near the dispensary 
veranda at Ramyanpett, listening to the singing 
of the Christians in the little chapel only a few- 
yards distant, I saw an immense king cobra 
writhing along the ground close to the side of 
the chapel. Suddenly, to my horror, he raised 



his hooded head and looked in at an open window 
beside which a little schoolgirl stood, singing 
lustily. The snake's head was just back of the 
child's and not six inches from it. With a swift 
prayer that the child might not see the serpent 
and make a fatal move, I gave a low, shrill 
whistle. The snake turned his head in my direc- 
tion, and as he did so I jumped toward him wav- 
ing my arms. Instantly he dropped to the ground 
and sped into the long grass near by, while my 
brain swam with the joyful reaction. 



THE long Mahomedan and Hindu holi- 
days and big feasts occur during the 
winter season, hence all the Indians are 
too busy merrymaking to attend to their sick 
relatives. When I told a Mahomedan gentleman 
that his granddaughter would die if they did not 
bring her to the hospital, he replied: "I believe 
you, Doctor Mem Sahib, but what can we do? 
We have no time to bring her now or to stay 
there with her. For yet many days the feast 
must be celebrated." This practical emptying of 
the hospital usually gave us an opportunity for 
medical touring, and one winter we planned to 
go to some town near the railway. Sending the 
other assistants ahead, and taking Abbisha- 
kamma with us, we boarded the train at Akana- 
pett station. 

One of our fellow passengers proved the first 
object of interest. Carefully hidden from sight 
behind her hhonrka, it was only when we had 
passed the station and she had thrown back her 



veil that we saw how old and sad was her face. 

With the usual idea of friendliness in India, 
Abbishakamma had soon drawn from the lady 
her story. 

She was traveling to Hyderabad to take charge 
of the children of her daughter who had just 
died. The bereaved mother wept bitterly when 
she spoke of this tenderly loved daughter; how 
fair she was, how good and true, how intelligent ! 
She had been ''educated" and could read and 
write. "Oh, never before was so lovely a flower 
torn from its stem by the hand of Allah!" 

As we left the car, the old lady, in extreme 
courtesy, slipped off her shoes and, standing 
upon the seat, bent almost double in her parting 
salaam to us. 

Arrived at Wudrarum, we heard the loud wail- 
ing for the dead and learned that the patel's 
young wife had just died in childbirth. They 
were about to carry her to her funeral pyre, so, 
much interested in the funeral ceremonies, which 
we had never yet seen, we followed with the hun- 
dreds of villagers. 

The litter on which the body was borne con- 
sisted of two long, parallel poles, to which were 
fastened transversely, with ropes of straw, seven 
pieces of wood. The shroud was wrapped around 
the body and bound strongly with straw ropes, 



the face left uncovered, and flowers scattered 
over all. 

The relatives and friends and the villagers be- 
sides wailed loudly as the litter was carried along, 
the mother's \vail rising shrilly above the rest : 

Oh! the apple of my eye; Oh, my darling; my blissful 

Oh ! the apple of my eye, where hast thou hidden thyself? 
Oh ! my flower, where hast thou hidden thyself ? 

and on and on in the piteous "Mother's Wail" 
which every Indian girl learns by heart in early 

Three times the litter was placed on the 
ground and each tim.e the mother wept and wailed 
and caressed the dead face of her beloved. At 
one of the halts all the jewels were removed from 
the body. 

In an empty field on an oblong pile of fagots, 
constituting the funeral pyre, the corpse was 
placed. It was then covered with small splinters 
of wood, sprinkled with panchagavia (the five 
products of the cow) and soaked in oil. The 
husband, holding his eldest son — a boy of eight — 
by the hand, walked about the pyre three times, 
the boy allowing water to trickle from a cracked 
earthern coonda he held. At the end of the third 
trip around the body, the boy suddenly dashed the 
coonda to the ground, shattering it into hun- 



dreds of pieces, a symbol of the end of life. All 
this time the chief mourners and everybody else 
wept and wailed and struck the breast, or, in 
couples clasped in each other's arms, they swayed 
to and fro in the extremity of grief, or in the 
semblance of it in case of the hired mourners. 

Now the boy took a lighted torch and set fire 
to the four corners of the fagot-pile. When the 
flames had caught, the family departed to go 
through with the long, tedious ceremonies fol- 
lowing a death. The mother of the deceased 
must walk around the village for tv/elve or six- 
teen days, wailing always and calling out at every 
gate: "My child has gone from me!" So, with 
the bitter cry, "My child, she was my very own 
child!" the poor old creature departed on her 
weary round. 

We watched the burning until the body was 
utterly destroyed, and when in the morning we 
came again the family were ready to gather the 
ashes and throw them into the Ganges, taking the 
long journey for the purpose, for they were 
wealthy people and could afford this "priceless 
blessing for the dead." 

At the camp, a mother brought to us her baby 
boy, an only son, whose life might have been 
easily saved by a slight operation. When I ex- 
plained this to her and begged her to bring the 



child to our Medak Hospital, she exclaimed: 
"Mari yetlaf Sanipotai, sanipotardoo. Adriish- 
tam! Yami chayavallinoof" (And how? If he 
dies he dies! It is fate. What can I do ? ) Truly 
the overcoming of obstacles is no part of the 
Hindu nature. 

The day following was a feast day, but that did 
not prevent the patients nor the officials of the 
village from coming to us, as usual. But ah, the 
splendor of these "great ones"! The blue and 
pink flowered satins; the rich velvets with silk 
embroidery ; the elegant gold and silver bordered 
turbans ! As frankly as a small boy displays his 
first trousers they showed us these fine garments. 

"See !" they boasted, turning round and round 
for our inspection. "Are we not fine in our new 

Nothing could equal the careless grace of the 
tall pale moonshi as he tossed back his long hair 
in the evening breeze and posed for us. With 
much ceremony he informed us that they would 
immediately begin to collect the money for a 
dispensary, as they all were extremely anxious 
we should come to them once a week, and that 
they had planned to inscribe in large red letters 
to cover the entire outer wall of the building the 
words, "Doctor Mem Sahib!" 

On this feast day presents poured in faster 


[than ever, if that were possible, for the tahsil- 
dar, the peshgar, the moonshi, and the patel 
had during our entire stay in their village vied 
with one another in providing us with foodstuffs 
of all sorts. When these gifts of food were pre- 
sented, the long procession of servants, in their 
medley of bright-colored costumes, and bearing 
on their heads huge vessels of queer shape, 
brought vividly to mind the picture of England's 
Christmas in the olden days, "Bringing in the 
boar's head." 

At Mirzapally, where we next went, black 
smallpox was working havoc in the village. 

Poshamma, the goddess of smallpox, is con- 
sidered by the Hindus an especially powerful 
devil goddess, and, as a rule, the Hindus refuse 
to give any form of treatment for the disease, 
for "Did not the goddess Poshamma send the 
smallpox? Shall we not offend her if we try to 
cure the victim of her displeasure?" 

We were called to a hut where, when I had 
become accustomed to the smoky darkness, I saw 
on the floor two or three children in all stages of 
the dreadful disease. One, a child of three years, 
fairly putrid with the worst form of smallpox, 
lay with her head in the lap of an untainted girl 
of ten. In another hut a woman, stricken down 



by the black demon and fainting with weakness, 
suckled her healthy babe. Alas, poor India! 

Mirzapally is on the railroad line to Hydera- 
bad, so we snatched a holiday "in town." 

We called on Mrs. Nundy, and then, in a hired 
tonga, drove to Secunderabad. Our driver's 
brutality to his skeleton horse so disgusted us 
that, after vainly begging him to stop whipping 
the poor beast with such unnecessary severity, I 
devised a preventive method. Every time the 
horse was struck I said nothing, but, much to the 
driver's amazement and in spite of his shrill pro- 
tests, I reached over the seat and gave his bare 
arm a severe pinch — twisting, torturing ! At last 
his dense brain grasped the "cause and effect" 
idea, and the horse was allowed to trot on un- 
molested, while the driver meekly nursed his 
bruised limb. 

At the Secunderabad post office I asked the 
cost of registering a parcel "from Secunderabad 
to New York City." After a full hour's search 
for the information in question, the Hindu gentle- 
man in charge of the registry department closed 
the books over which he had been poring, and 
remarked in a grave, emphatic tone: "Madam, 
you are mistaken in the name of the city. There 
is a New York State, but there is no such place 
as New York City!" 



From Secunderabad we came back to Mirza- 
pally and journeyed on to Sandampett. We were 
just settling ourselves to dinner the first evening 
when a tall form enveloped in a gray blanket fell 
at my feet, and in the patting and stammering 
which followed, I could recognize only that 
another grateful patient had found us out. Then 
he arose and we beheld the patel of the village, 
a handsome man of twenty-two, who, the year 
previous, had undergone a serious operation in 
our hospital. I recalled that when he came to us 
I had feared for his life; and it was a real joy 
to me to see, instead of the thin, hollow-eyed 
youth I had known, this fine, strapping fellow. 
He had forgotten not one of the kindnesses 
shown him in his illness. 

"Did you not smooth my hair and call me your 
son ? Did you not watch over me day and night 
with loving tenderness?" 

And so, over and over, he enumerated every 
act of ours during the anxious time of his illness 
until our butler gently but firmly reminded him 
that it was eight o'clock and we had not yet dined. 
Then, reluctantly, he left us. 

Our grateful patel had played "advance agent" 
to such good purpose that over three hundred 
patients came to us next day, the patel standing 



outside and urging the people to come quickly 
and in numbers. 

"Do you fear the Mem Sahibs because of their 
white faces? There is no fear, I tell you; there 
is no fear ! They work no evil ; they work all 
good; they bring hope to the hopeless and health 
to the dying!" 

The whirl of things kept us from realizing our 
weariness until the sun had gone down, when, 
with an involuntary sigh of relief, we saw the 
last patient depart, and started out for a little 
stroll on the banks of the beautiful lake back of 
the tent. 

How can the Hindu be aught else than poet 
and dreamer with such scenes continuously be- 
fore him? 

On one side sparkled the broad, blue lake dotted 
with white water lilies and with wild duck by the 
hundred floating on its surface; on the other, 
huge, tumbled boulders gazed majestically down 
on dainty, blue grass-flowers and rich, purple 

In the rice fields beyond row on row of women 
labored, chanting while they worked, their red 
garments in striking contrast with the green of 
the fields. 

From this fair scene we strolled to the mango 
tope near our camping place, and until darkness 



fell watched the hordes of monkeys which 
romped unceasingly among the giant trees. 
These big monkeys, though amusing enough in 
their tree-homes, sometimes descend in great col- 
onies upon a village, and then the destruction they 
wreak is frightful. In a few minutes a roof has 
its tiles completely off, or a large rice field has 
not a dtib's worth of rice left in it. 

Another rushing day was followed by another 
walk. As we turned back toward camp our path 
led along the high, narrow bank of the lake, 
which on one side sloped steeply to the water and 
on the other led sharply down twenty feet to a 
pile of rocks in the mango tope. As it happened, 
all the hundreds of monkeys had decided to oc- 
cupy for the night a tree that hung over our 
path, and when we, of necessity, passed beneath 
them and so near that we might have touched 
them, their rage was unbounded. Amid the 
screaming and chattering of all the monkey col- 
ony, ten or twelve large males rushed down the 
limbs toward us as if they would tear us to pieces. 
We knew that the least sign of fear would prob- 
ably be fatal, so past the blazing, green eyes, 
the fierce, white teeth, and the eager, clawlike 
fingers almost at our throats, we marched stead- 
ily with our heads high; but the thumping of our 
hearts nearly choked us, and when the danger 


Watering the rice-fields 


was past we sat down on the grassy bank white 
and weak and trembling. 

At noon, next day, the jugglers and snake- 
charmers came — Hermanns without the stage- 
settings. They produced rabbits from nothing- 
ness; spouted fire from their mouths; raised 
mango trees before our eyes from seed to fruit; 
and charmed their glistening cobra-pets with the 
soft music of their pipes. 

A babe of two was with them, and the bored 
look on the little face as he twined a cobra or 
python around his tiny neck or pulled it about as 
if it were an inanimate toy was comical enough. 

It was the boy of twelve years, however, that 
held our gaze. His gypsy face, his tangled hair 
falling low over his shoulders, a dirty turban set 
sidewise on his saucy head, his ragged coat and 
dhoti, his nimble gestures, his bright, impudent 
smile, and the art in his voice as he played his 
part, bewitched us, and all too soon he picked up 
his queer, native drum and strolled away in the 
wake of his masters. 

Two performing bullocks, great, beautiful 
beasts with the hump on the back much enlarged 
by vigorous massage from their youth, enter- 
tained us for a time. All decked with bright 
ribbons and little, tinkling bells, they chased play- 
fully about the field after their master and pre- 



tended to gore him, or made deep salaams to us 
with knees bent and with head touching the 

As night came on we were about to move away, 
and already our tent was packed, when our evan- 
gelist said the people were begging us to stay 
and talk about our religion. 

So down in the moonlight we sat, and as far 
as the evangelist's voice would reach were clus- 
tered men and women, all listening eagerly to 
his words, now and then nodding their heads in- 
telligently or rubbing their hands with glisten- 
ing eyes of assent to some special point. 

One of the men came up to us and begged us 
to take his boy into our school. *'Do you know," 
he said, "ten years ago white Padres came and 
talked to us of your Christ and we all ran away 
afraid of being cursed, and now if we dared we 
should all be Christians." 

Then song followed story and story followed 
song, until we thought they would never be satis- 
fied. At last, one by one, they straggled ofif, and 
by midnight all were gone. 

At Kalvakoontla a warm reception greeted us 
from some grateful patients of old. As these 
"grateful patients" happened to be the chiefs of 
the village, they filled the tent, and when, after 
talking to them awhile, we begged to be excused, 



for hundreds of people were waiting outside for 
medicine, they laughed carelessly: "Oh, never 
mind those people, they can wait." Still we did 
manage by strenuous endeavor to treat practically 
all who came. 

Kalvakoontla is a jagir village; that is, a vil- 
lage given by the Nizam to some one man for 
services rendered, and all the revenues of the 
village are thenceforward paid to this favored 
man, and all law is in his hands. In fact, the 
village is a tiny, independent state. Here the 
Dacoities and other bad men flock, for they are 
beyond the reach of law unless the owner of the 
village punishes them, and he has this power only 
if they commit the crime in his village. The 
Jagadir of Kalvakoontla was sick and had 
begged us to see him. A kindly old graybeard, 
he lay comfortably in bed on his veranda hid by 
vines from the street, and talked to us in a loud, 
cheerful voice. 

"I have just a little fever; I wish you would 
send me some medicine," he said, as I felt his 

"Have you had any medicines yet from the 
hakims f* I asked. 

"Indeed I have not," he replied emphatically. 
"I'd rather die than drink black men's medicine," 
and he grinned round at the group of "black men" 



standing near, who took no offense but all grinned 
in response. "No, the only medicine I've had is 
cahster ile (castor oil)." 

"All right, I will send you some medicine. By 
whom shall I send it?" 

"Oh, by anybody; these people all belong to 

The love of medicine runs in the Indian's 
veins. A naked baby of scarcely two years 
peeped shyly out from behind his mother's skirts 
and gravely offered me his hand. 

"He has not been feeling well for a few days," 
said his mother. "He wants you to feel his 

As we were leaving one of the villages, ten or 
more lepers, in all stages of the terrible disease, 
came to the tent and begged us to help them. We 
did what we could, but our hearts ached at the 
hopelessness of it all. 

On the homeward journey, we passed through 
a remarkably clean and attractive village made up 
entirely of Brahmans and other very high-caste 
people. There was an eclipse of the moon that 
night and the caste people, after greeting us very 
courteously, asked us to tell them about the 
eclipse and its meaning: 

"In your shastras (science or books of re- 


ligion) what evil does such a thing as this pre- 
dict ? In ours thus and thus will befall." 

We explained to them the scientific theory of 
the phenomenon, but we might as well have held 
our peace, for they only looked at us pityingly as 
if to say, "Is that all you know about it?" 



WHEN the great Mahomedan feast of 
Mahorrum comes to an end, the streets 
seem very dull after all the color and 
crowding and jollity. 

The feast of Mahorrum is held in honor of the 
two sons of Mahomet, Hoseyn and Hassan, who 
were killed in battle. The feast also gives Ma- 
homedans an opportunity to worship all dead 
heroes, and everywhere about the village effigies 
made of tall poles decked in gaudy cloth and tin- 
sel represent these heroes and are worshiped as 
saints or pirs. On the last night of the feast 
the pirs are treated as real dead bodies, washed 
in the lake for purification, dressed in proper 
grave clothes, and buried with all ceremony. 

Anybody who dies a death of violence is a 
"hero." An Arab who was killed last year in a 
drunken quarrel was one of the heroes this year 
and his pir was worshiped with the rest. One 
of the pirs was erected just outside our compound 
gate, and throughout the feast men and boys 



circled about the pole, waving palm branches 
and chanting loudly in time to odd Indian drums, 
"Hoseyn ! Hassan ! Hoseyn ! Hassan !" over and 
over again. 

The Mahomedans throw their whole souls into 
the celebration; dress their gayest, and laugh 
their jolliest. Boys and girls in gold and scar- 
let run through the village bubbling over with 
joy; for the streets are lined with booths where 
men sell the fruits and candy and toys which can 
be had only at Mahorrum time. Everywhere 
men and boys disguised as tigers or bears or 
monkeys frolic in the midst of real bears who 
dance clumsily at their masters' commands ; while 
the drums keep up their monotonous "jinkity- 
jing! jinkity-jing!" Besides the drums, music 
of every variety known to the Hyderabad Indian 
fills the air. One instrument is somewhat like a 
bagpipe in appearance. One pipe is placed in the 
mouth of the player and one pipe in each of his 
nostrils, and the sound is like a flute accompa- 
nied by the humming of myriads of bees. 

Of course, beggars abound, religious and 
otherwise, among the rest repulsive devil priests 
with long, matted hair and wild eyes whose 
bodies, splotched with green and red and yellow 
paint and powder, are saved from mother-naked- 



ness by a scanty loin cloth. Leper beggars, too, 
are there, half eaten by their hideous sores. 

On the fifth day of IMahorrum, in Hyderabad 
City, the procession of the Lungar takes place. 

Two or three centuries ago, when the crown 
prince of Golconda was hunting in the forest, his 
elephant ran away with him and, as the rescuers 
started in pursuit, the distracted queen vowed 
that, if her son were saved, she would give to the 
shrine of Hoseynji Allum, the most sacred in the 
kingdom, a lungar (the tethering chain which 
encircles an elephant's foot) of pure gold. 

The son was saved and on the fifth day of Ma- 
horrum the Royal Family, their vassals and re- 
tainers, all in gala attire, carried the golden lun- 
gar, with much pomp and ceremony, to the shrine. 
On every anniversary since there has been held 
the lungar procession, all the troops of the Ni- 
zam, regular and irregular — about fifty thousand 
men — joining in the event. 

The Irregular Troops are those of the feuda- 
tory princes, who, under a system somewhat like 
the feudal tenure of old England, give revenue 
and military service in payment for land held. 

The Lungar is the greatest holiday of the 
year in Hyderabad, and the city gives itself up 
entirely to pleasure. People from the surround- 
ing country swarm into the place by thousands, 



and the streets are a mass of many-colored life. 

On Lungar day the Prime Minister is ac- 
customed to invite to tiffin two or three hundred 
guests who witness the parade from the balcony 
of his palace. One year, through the courtesy 
of the chairman of our mission society, several 
of us received an invitation. 

Our party was at the palace in good time, and, 
waiting for the procession, we laughed and 
chatted with each other, v^-atched the gay crowd 
about us, and felt no impatience. Prince George 
and Prince Conrad of Bavaria were there, the 
British Resident and his family, and the officers 
and ladies of the Secunderabad garrison, besides 
many of the Civil Service people, for all the Hy- 
derabad w^orld turns out for the Lungar pa- 

His Highness, the Nizam, w^as not in town; 
but in the private gallery next to us, which is al- 
ways reserved for the Nizam and his family, sat 
the royal children. The boys gaily frisked about, 
but the girls, two mites of three and five, sitting 
quietly on chairs, while their ayahs slowly fanned 
them, were charming pictures in green and gold 
pajamas and slippers and long overdress of 
sparkling gauze reaching to the knee, with topees 
of green and gold to match the pajamas. 

In the great courtyard below, w^here the pro- 


cession enters, wheels and salutes the Nizam and 
the Prime Minister, the villagers were making 
merry with all sorts of buffoonery, the Mahor- 
rum ''Tiger" with yellow stripes, long tail, and 
the mask of tiger's face, being a special feature 

Suddenly the courtyard cleared ; the procession 
was drawing near. 

The Rocketeers were in advance and as they 
reached the saluting point, they discharged their 

Then came a number of elephants, fantastically 
painted in all sorts of color designs, with long 
saddle cloths of velvet and cloth of gold, and 
bearing on their backs carved howdahs of silver 
or gold containing the princes of the Dominions, 
dressed in richest materials of brilliant coloring, 
often in pure cloth of gold. 

One two-year-old prince, sitting quite alone in 
his howdah, looked down gravely from his ex- 
alted position as if he fully understood the dig- 
nity of his rank, his many jewels and his scarlet 
velvet coat, embroidered in gold and with a wide 
gold border, flashing in the sunshine, which also 
lighted the gay trappings of the horses and riders 
of his dozens of attendants who rode close beside 
the elephant and watched anxiously their baby 

The Camel Sowars followed, the camels richly 


caparisoned like the elephants, but their riders in 
costume somewhat quieter than that of the occu- 
pants of the howdahs. 

The well-disciplined and smartly uniformed 
police force which followed rested us slightly be- 
fore the Irregular Troops burst into view, Bed- 
ouins, Sikhs, Pathans, Nubians, Arabs and Af- 
ghans, horse and foot, jumping, dancing, howl- 
ing, chanting, throwing weapons into the air or 
discharging their guns. 

The performance of the Arabs reminded me of 
the Scotch Highlanders dancing the sword dance, 
but the Arab's dress is rougher, his gestures 
wilder, and his yells more ferocious. 

Each body of Irregular Troops was com- 
manded by its gorgeously costumed chief seated 
in a howdah on the back of an elephant as splen- 
didly decked out as its rider. These chiefs were 
preceded by a native band of musicians whose 
ear-splitting "music" and Dervish dancing, with 
drawn sword waving in air, added to the excite- 
ment, until we grew almost dizzy with the never- 
ceasing whirl and light. 

Then came the Regular British and Indian 
Troops, artillery, cavalry, infantry, all quiet and 
soldierly. The horsemen were splendidly 
mounted and their thin-limbed Arab horses 
pranced and danced in perfect time to the music 



of the band playing old, familiar tunes, "Swanee 
River," ''See the Conquering Hero Comes," or 
"Johnny Comes Marching Home." 

For three hours the procession trooped past, 
the leader of each division stopping in front of 
the palace, to salute the Royal Family and the 
Prime Minister. 

Then it v^as all over, and we ate the cake and 
drank the tea of prosy modern life. 



BECAUSE the Indian climate was fast sap- 
ping her strength, Miss Richardson had 
to leave us for England and Miss Tomble- 
son and I accompanied her as far as Bombay. 

On our way we stopped at "Mukti," Kedgaon, 
to see the marvelous work of Pundita Ramabai 
among the child widows of India. A bullock 
gharri conveyed us quickly from the Kedgaon 
station to Mukti, where we were introduced to 
Pundita Ramabai, a hazel-eyed, curly-haired lit- 
tle woman, barefooted and dressed in a sari of 
coarse white muslin. After a pleasant chat with 
the Pundita and her charming daughter Manora- 
mabai, we visited the various departments of the 

Our next stop was at Poona to see the mission 
work of the Sohrabjis, those wonderful sisters 
(children of Parsees converted to Christianity) 
who have been so successful in uplifting their 

After dining with Miss Susie Sohrabji, whom 


I had known in Philadelphia, we called on her 
mother and her sister Mary, both of whom pos- 
sessed Miss Susie's charm of manner; and this 
family charm seemed communicated even to the 
big, amber-colored Persian cat who drew his 
claws gently across our hands in a caress or 
strutted up and down with his plumed tail proudly 

In Bombay we visited at the first opportunity 
the Parsee "Towers of Silence" on Malabar Hill. 

With morbid interest we watched the vultures 
as they sat on the top of the white, rounded walls, 
waiting, waiting! 

Then we turned cityward, gladly welcoming 
the sight of the blue waters of the harbor, and 
the exhilarating touch of the salt breeze — sure 
enemy to gloomy meditation. 

Our next goal was Elephanta Caves. A steam- 
boat leaves Bombay in the morning for the island 
on which the caves are situated and returns in 
the evening; but when we reached Apollo Bunder 
and saw the merry little tom-tits skimming here 
and there through the water we decided to en- 
gage one. It was a less easy task than we had 
imagined, not, however, for lack of boatmen. At 
the intimation that we wanted one of their boats, 
the men fairly swarmed about us. Through their 
excited jabber came one persistent, nasal whine, 



"My name, Ibrahim 77; I your best man; you 
liking my boat, Mem Sahib!" until importunity 
won the day and, turning toward the owner of 
the voice, we requested him to prepare his boat 
for us. And we did not regret our choice, al- 
though "Ibrahim "jf^ made an earnest effort at, 
not "highway," but "waterway," robbery. 

"You not giving me more money, I not taking 
you to the shore," he threatened. 

We had been a few years in the Orient, and 
were old hands at the game. 

"Very well," I laughed, "this is a jolly little 
boat; we can stand it as long as you can. We 
agreed to pay you so much and just so much will 
we pay." 

Several more of his efforts were silenced by 
our laughing indifference; then he gave up and 
proved a good-tempered and obliging pilot. 

As our tom-tit danced over the sun-flecked 
waves in the strong breeze, we filled our lungs 
with the long draughts of the salt sea air and 
sang snatches of song to pass the time; for the 
caves are seven miles out from Bombay. 

At the island we were besieged by small boys 
who had for sale beetles of a glistening blue- 
green color; and tiny, golden wood lice. Miss 
Richardson bought two or three of the living 
jewels for her brother's museum. 



We found the caves much like those at Ellora, 
only there were fewer at Elephanta. 

These dingy rock temples are weird places with 
the monster faces of the stone gods peering out at 
you in the semi-darkness from every pillar and 
wall, like a band of misshapen giants stealing 
upon you unaware. 

Refreshing ourselves with ginger ale from a 
small shop near the caves, we started on the long, 
wearisome walk in the hot sun, over the wide 
stretches of sandy beach, broken here and there 
by a tall and lonely palm tree, toward the landing 
of the regular steamboat to Bombay. 

Now came the time of farewell. Mrs. Adkin 
and the children had come to Bombay previously 
to take the same steamship on which Miss Rich- 
ardson was to sail; and Miss Tombleson and I, 
as we watched the gallant ship plow her swift 
way westward, felt desolate indeed, for, in the 
intimacy of lonely jungle life together, your 
friends grow very dear to you. 

Before leaving Bombay, we called on several 
acquaintances and visited in the way of sight- 
seeing the Rajabai clock tower and the famous 
Victoria railway station. Then, purchasing at 
the large, well-equipped Crawford Market a bas- 
ket of mangoes and pineapples for the Medak 
people, we began our homeward journey. 



At one of the stations we saw two entirely dif- 
ferent types of "holy beggar." One, a wild- 
haired, fierce-eyed fakir, sat cross-legged on the 
platform, with his torturing hooks and knives and 
bed of spikes beside him. The other was an old 
Sanyasi or Brahman, who had reached the "last 
life" on earth. A look of unutterable peace was 
on his face; in his hand he held an artistic little 
brass begging-bowl; while by his side stood his 
ever-present disciple. 



IN Hyderabad, we got but the lightest zephyr 
from the Swadeshi storm sweeping over In- 
dia. "Swadeshi" means ''our own coun- 
try." The Indian people in various sections of 
the land are rising against their English conquer- 
ors, boycotting English goods and filling the mag- 
azines and newspapers with seditious matter. 

The chief instigators of the trouble seem to 
be the Indian laborer, ignorant and emotional, 
whose handicraft has been superseded by machin- 
ery, and his living thereby taken from him; 
the men who feel that they have been wronged in 
not receiving an appointment after passing the 
Civil Service examinations ; and those who, from 
selfish and corrupt motives, rouse in young, in- 
flammable students a false "patriotism." 

It is generally admitted, however, that bad in- 
dustrial conditions are back of it all, and these 
conditions are daily growing worse and worse. 
While salaries and incomes are fixed by iron- 



clad custom, the price of supplies and the amount 
of taxes increase with the advance of civilization. 
Of laborers the world over, those of India re- 
ceive the poorest wage in proportion to the cost 
of living. 

Then, too, the tariff laws of the Government 
give no encouragement to home industries. It 
naturally follows that the frequent "cornering" 
of necessary food supplies, such as wheat or rice, 
means to thousands of families cruel hunger and 

Much of the trouble comes also from an in- 
herent lack of ability in the East Indian to over- 
come obstacles. But these obstacles are many 
and great. Chief among them are, perhaps, the 
laws of caste and of labor, fixed two thousand 
years ago and to-day rigidly adhered to by these 
worshipers of ancestors and of past customs. 
Every man must do the same work and in the 
same manner as his fathers have done. Should 
he attempt improvement — which he never does — 
he would be boycotted. Each separate occupa- 
tion means a separate caste, and when an Indian 
loses caste he loses all. He is ruthlessly thrust 
out from his little world; his own family will not 
even speak to him ; no one of his caste will eat or 
drink with him; and from everybody he meets 
with nothing but curses and contempt. 



Another obstacle is the extreme illiteracy of the 
Indian. Of the entire nation, including the 
learned Brahman class, more than eighty per 
cent of the men and ninety-nine per cent of the 
women can neither read nor write. 

Still another obstacle is found in the fact that 
two millions of "holy beggars" fasten their teeth 
like vampires into the throat of India. 

Then, also, the continuous heat of his country 
and the general practice of endogamy, together 
with the semi-starvation of generations, have so 
impoverished the blood of the Indian peasant 
that often the mildest disease — a disease to which 
we of the West would give scarcely a second 
thought — conquers and kills him; he expects ill- 
ness and is surprised when it does not come to 
him ; he looks forward with apparent equanimity 
to his annual attack of dysentery and rheumatism 
with the rainy season and of bronchitis with the 
winter season ; and when he does fall sick he ex- 
pects death rather than life. 

Besides all this, the Indian is improvidence per- 

Among Indian coolies, both husband and wife 
are wage-earners and work equally hard, giving 
all they have to the support of their families. 
Mr. Posnett, trying to raise the pecuniary level 
of the coolie, offered, instead of the universal 



twelve dubs (three cents) a day to the woman 
and sixteen dubs (four cents) to the man, to 
raise the woman's wage to sixteen dubs. 

"What!" exclaimed the men, "shall our wives 
earn as much as we? No, indeed! The women 
would soon become hardened with pride. Pray 
leave us as we are!" 

A man has often refused to accept as an inheri- 
tance a field of land unless he can sell it imme- 
diately, "because," he says, "I have already one 
field to till; it provides enough food for myself 
and my family when the rains are good. An- 
other field means extra work and taxes, and, if 
there is food for to-day, why trouble about to- 

Therefore, any little mishap in the weather is 
tragic. Too little rain or too much means famine 
immediately and terrible suffering; and an empty 
purse meets the grievously burdensome, religion- 
compelled expense — often a year's income — of a 
wedding, a funeral, or a religious feast. Money 
must be borrowed at from twelve to one hundred 
per cent. What, then, can keep the Indian peas- 
ant from the clutches of the merciless money- 
lender, and the peasant's child from being sold 
as a bond servant or "slave of the soil" to pay his 
father's debt? What hope has he of better days 
to come when his daily food might be increased 



in quantity beyond a starving allowance, and in 
variety beyond rice or lentils or coarse grains; 
when his house might be built of something more 
substantial than mud; when his furniture might 
exceed a few cooking pots ; and when an increased 
self-respect might expel a few millions of the 
vermin of every variety which infest with im- 
punity his dark and sufifocating hut? How can 
his view of life be other than sad-colored; and, in 
the midst of his difficulties, what can he do but 
sit inert uttering his hopeless, ''What can I do? 
If I die, I die!" or kiss the white man's feet and 
beg for help ? 

Another mighty obstacle to the progress of the 
Indian is that he never seems to learn wisdom 
from precept, example or experience. 

I had entered into conversation with one of 
our coolies "who is more intelligent and progres- 
sive than most of our working-people. He spoke 
of the threatened Russian invasion of India. 

"We should not object to the English Govern- 
ment," he added, "if it would free us from the 
greed of the money lender. Usury is the ruin of 
our country!" and he brought his fist down on 
his knee with emphasis. 

A wild impulse seized me to experiment in this 

"Listen to me !" I said. "Let's try to get rid of 


this sort of thing, at least among the people of 
our own compound. I will lend you money when 
you need it and you will pay me three per cent 
interest yearly, the interest payments to be made 
monthly, until, at your own convenience, you pay 
the principal. I will ask no security and no ques- 
tions. Deal fairly with me, and I will deal fairly 
with you!" 

The coolie grinned delightedly. 

"Trust me, Honorable Doctor Lady!" he con- 

The next morning he came to my door. 

''Honorable Doctor Lady, I need ten rupees. 
According to your suggestion of last evening, 
will you lend me that amount?" 

I gave him the money and explained carefully 
that he must, when he received his next month's 
salary, come to me and pay the interest on ten 
rupees in cowries (small shells, one hundred 
and sixty of which are worth one American 

The story of my unprecedented philanthropy 
spread rapidly throughout the compound and in 
a short time I had lent the fifty rupees which I 
had resolved to spend in learning whether the 
Indian peasant could be helped out of the grasp 
of the money lender. 

A month passed and the interest fell due. The 



interest on each rupee was less than one-twelfth 
of a cent, but no interest appeared. I called sep- 
arately on each of the people to whom I had lent 
the money and asked them for the small interest 
due. Each one replied with profuse apologies 
that he could not pay the interest. Then to the 
coolie I had first helped I delivered a long lec- 
ture, telling him how his dishonest dealing with 
me had cost him more than he realized, and how 
he could have no more pity from me on account 
of the money lender's usury. 

He listened respectfully and when I had fin- 
ished replied, "Truly you have spoken, Honor- 
able Doctor Lady. I have been dishonest. I 
have not paid you the interest as I promised, but 
I am your son, and I hope you will not refuse to 
lend me ten more rupees which I require to-day." 

All that was months ago ; yet never have I seen 
one dub of principal or interest from any of the 
people to whom I lent the money. 

It was after this banking experiment of mine 
had failed that on a certain day one of our house 
servants came to me weeping piteously. 

''Honorable Doctor Lady," he cried, "I can 
bear this no longer. Every time I pass the money 
lender's door, he abuses me with vile words be- 
cause I cannot pay him five rupees I have bor- 
rowed from him. Pray, pray give me the five 



rupees that I may pay my debt to him and hold 
my head high among my people!" 

I gave him the five rupees and he departed 
grinning widely. The very next day the same 
servant came again to me. 

"Oh, Honorable Doctor Lady, the money- 
lender still abuses me. Pray give me five rupees 
that I may pay my debt to him and hold my head 
high among my people !" 

"Why," I cried in astonishment, "only yester- 
day I gave you money to cover the debt which 
you said was all you owed him." 

"Truly you have spoken," sobbed the graceless 
scamp, whose alcohol-laden breath came heavily 
to my nostrils, "but I spent that money for to- 
bacco and other necessaries, and the money- 
lender still abuses me." 

Reverting to the Sivadeshi problem, you will 
agree with me, I think, that, considering the char- 
acter and environment of the Indian, he seems 
ill prepared for a successful revolutionary move- 
ment against England. 

When I was in Calcutta, I asked one of the 
most progressive and best educated Babus if he 
thought the Hindus could, were the Government 
turned over to them, rule successfully their own 

"No," he replied emphatically, "not yet. Our 


Hindu people are too weak physically, mentally, 
and morally. We are too diversified with our 
hundreds of different castes and different lan- 
guages. The dissension and hatred among the 
various castes would be enough in itself to pre- 
vent a Hindu government from being successful. 
Then, there are the Mahomedans. Though there 
are five times as many Hindus as Mahomedans 
in India, the Mahomedans are physically strong 
— born soldiers — and in war they would conquer 
us. The English rule is just, far more just than 
Moslem rule could ever be ; the Government gives 
to the Indian people many high judicial appoint- 
ments in the civil service, and the lower class of 
executive appointments ; some of the English peo- 
ple are very good and kind ; but the English and 
the Indian are so different; they do not under- 
stand each other — and the English do not love 
us" — he smiled rather bitterly. "You will under- 
stand better what I mean if you will notice the 
concentrated contempt of the Anglo-Indian in his 
utterance of those two words, 'the natives.' " 



AT hot weather holiday time, Miss Wig- 
field, Miss Tombleson and I set off for 
■ Darjiling. 
We had long promised ourselves a visit to the 
"Marble Rocks" of Jubbelpore, so at Jubbelpore 
station v^e stopped off and began our ten-mile 
drive to the "Rocks." 

A good driver, a speedy horse, and charming 
scenery made the way seem short. Swaying 
bamboo clumps formed long avenues, and groves, 
rich with fine mango trees, held colonies of mon- 
keys, gray and brown, which chattered at us as 

we passed. 

It was almost dusk when we arrived at the 
Nerbudda River and our guide hurried out the 
pleasure boat for the two-mile row between the 
cliffs of pure marble fifty to eighty feet above 
the narrow but "bottomless" river. 

As we climbed into the big boat, a naked baby 
boy stumbled over the rocks behind us, sobbing 
wildly. On asking an explanation, we were told 



by the boatman that the child was his son and 
loved the boat-ride; that he wept because they 
were leaving him behind, "fearing he might an- 
noy Your Honors." Of course, we told the man 
to bring the little chap aboard, and the fat urch- 
in's beaming smile as he snuggled down in the 
bottom of the boat well repaid us. 

Snow white, with streaks or splotches of red, 
blue, gray, black or yellow, the marble rocks glis- 
tened above us. On ledges of the cliflf, ungainly 
baboons settled themselves for the night's sleep, 
their figures plainly outlined against the white of 
the marble. Countless swallows' nests were 
there, and bees' nests of enormous size. Our 
guide told us how a foolish soldier had fired his 
gun at a bees' nest, and how the bees had in- 
stantly attacked him and stung him to death, his 
companion escaping only by swimming the river 
and running through the woods at full speed, the 
bees several times almost conquering him. 

At the end of the row, where the river narrows 
into a ad-de-sac, we climbed out and waited on 
the shore for the moon to appear. While we 
scrambled among the boulders and picked up 
specimens of the colored marbles lying all about, 
the boatmen climbed up the hill and, building a 
fire, sat down for a good smoke. Then after an 
hour of pitchy darkness, which we beguiled by 



singing, the great round face of the moon came 
peeping over the horizon. Higher and higher it 
rose and at last smiled full on the marble cliffs. 
Oh, that transparent brilliance! Shall I ever for- 
get it, or the row back again with the glittering 
white walls of rock towering over us and throw- 
ing off sparks like diamonds where the marble 
was cut and broken? 

In the morning we visited the Jubbelpore 
Thuggee Jail, one of the best known in India. In 
former years the majority of the prisoners were 
Thugs, but the jail at present holds criminals of 
all kinds, and excels in the manufacture of tents 
and carpets. 

A courteous English official showed us over 
the place. Every time we came to a set of pris- 
oners, they instantly placed their working imple- 
ments on the ground and, squatting down, held 
their open palms up toward us until we had 
passed. We were told that this was to show the 
absence of any weapon of attack. 

We watched with special interest the carpet 
weaving, and marveled as the skilful, swiftly 
moving brown fingers transformed the mass of 
colored thread into a rug of beautiful design. 

Life in a jail like this must be rather pleasant 
to the Indian laborer that is not entirely aban- 
doned to laziness. Nobody is taxed beyond his 



strength with work; all have good food; are 
kindly treated and their caste prejudices are re- 
spected; while the sick are cared for in a well- 
equipped hospital. The object of the superin- 
tendent is to keep the prisoners up to a certain 
standard of weight and health, to get the best 
work from them and the least possible illness. 
To an active Western man the lack of freedom 
would be the greatest drawback ; but the average 
Indian is contented with a room six feet square 
in any location. The hard couches built up out of 
solid earth might also seem a cruelty to the West- 
ern mind, but the Indian at home sleeps on the 
mud floor of his hut. This seems to be a matter 
of preference, for, in our hospital, tape-strung 
cots, such as we ourselves slept on and consid- 
ered somewhat Spartan, were provided for the 
patients, but, in the early morning, I often found 
that they had slipped from the cot to the floor; 
and, when I asked why, they would answer: *'The 
cot is so soft, it makes my bones ache." 

Here in the jail, as at home, the Indian has his 
blanket and a little straw if he wants it. The 
unhappiness of the Indian prisoner seems to come 
solely from the compulsion to steady if not hard 
labor ; and in his absence from his family. 

Leaving Jubbelpore, we came one evening at 
sunset to the Sakrigali Ghat and the Ganges 


Tree ferns of India 


River. That sunset was one of the most impos- 
ing I had ever seen, the whole western sky a 
glory of pink and purple, scarlet and gold. 

Facing the lurid light the many "Faithful" on 
board the steamer — gray-bearded men, young 
lads and little boys — knelt side by side on the big 
deck and went through their elaborate evening 
supplication to Allah. 

Odd-looking, square-sailed boats floated on the 
Ganges, and everywhere along the shore hun- 
dreds of Hindus bathed in the sacred river. 

At Siliguri, where the real ascent of the moun- 
tain begins, the little Darjiling-Himalayan Rail- 
way train waited to take us and hundreds of 
other people up to the cloudland above, and soon 
the diminutive locomotive was looping, circling, 
and zigzagging in the most perplexing manner 
as it pulled us slowly up the mountain-track. 

The forests were filled with beauties and won- 
ders, lemon, orange, and fig trees, orchids, mighty 
bamboos, and the famous tree-ferns, which fre- 
quently reached as high as a two-story house, 
each frond being six feet or more in length. 
Then gradually we came to the plant-life of a 
cooler zone, the laurel, magnolia, geranium, the 
oak, and the chestnut, and, everywhere, the white, 
the silver, and the scarlet rhododendrons made 



the world delightful with their rose-like blossom 
and lemon fragrance. 

One of the most amazing sights in these damp, 
moss-covered woodlands was the "strangler," a 
climbing tree w^hich winds about some straight- 
growing tree, and slowly chokes it to death and 
crumbling ruin, the spiral, empty sheath of the 
deadly parasite telling the doom of its victim. 

Our eyes searched vainly through the dense 
woods for any sign of the wild animals which are 
said to abound in these forests, when suddenly 
Miss Wigfield called out, "O girls, look! An ele- 
phant!" Quickly scrambling to Miss Wigfield's 
side, we eagerly gazed out but saw immediately 
the joke that had been played upon us and joined 
in Miss Wigfield's laugh at our expense. A tame 
elephant with children playing fearlessly about 
him lazily swayed from side to side in the door- 
yard of a mountain hut, while with a young tree 
which he had pulled up by the roots and now 
grasped firmly in his trunk, he scratched his thick 
hide with seeming deep content. 

At Kurseong we thrilled with travel enthusi- 
asm to know we were but nineteen miles from 
mysterious Thibet. 

As we climbed higher and higher, the white 

purity of the cloud wreaths on the mountainside 

stood out strongly against the green of the forest, 



and, as we neared Darjiling, the mountain folk, 
with Mongolian features and sunny smile, gath- 
ered at every station to offer the tourists irre- 
sistible yellow raspberries in fresh green leaf 
baskets, irresistible, indeed, when offered by the 
children, who seemed to me especially attractive, 
not with the cherubic beauty of the Kashmiri 
child but with the engaging drollery of a Japan- 
ese doll, with almond eyes and tiny mouth pursed 



COOLIES by the score rushed up to us at 
the DarjiHng station, and we gazed in 
wonder while our baggage was strapped 
to the backs of the apple- faced women, squat and 
sturdy; the pack supported by a strap passing 
across the forehead, so that the strain came 
mostly on the neck and shoulder muscles. Two 
steamer trunks, a Gladstone bag on top, and a 
large basket in one hand was an ordinary load. 
One w^oman carried a small upright piano, bend- 
ing almost to the ground beneath her burden. 
The women are evidently schooled to this from 
earliest childhood, for even the toddling babes 
had each its little pack to carry. 

The people of Darjiling are a rare mixture. 
It is the summer home of the Lieutenant-Gov- 
ernor of Bengal, and there is a large British pop- 
ulation, among whom we made many pleasant ac- 
quaintances. But the natives of Darjiling far 
exceed the whites in number. All these moun- 
taineers are of the Mongolian type: the lazy, 



jolly, honest Lepchas ; the cruel and quarrelsome, 
but hard-working Bhuteas; the small-headed, 
cringing Thibetans; and the nobler people from 
Nepaul, of whom the Ghoorkas, probably the best 
soldiers in the world, form the highest class. All 
w^ear long, loose, cloak-like garments, belted in 
at the waist, and the women are loaded with 
heavy jewelry, the turquoise being predominant. 
All seem possessed of playful good humor and 
physical strength and courage, strikingly differ- 
ent from the gravity and timidity of the inhabi- 
tants of the plains. Even the children are fear- 
less. On our mountain climbs we frequently saw 
the sprightly little ones playing about like kittens 
on the very edge of frightful precipices. I shall 
not easily forget the sick horror that filled me 
when, climbing up a path, I rounded a curve and 
saw, some yards away, a child about two years 
old, leaning forward and far over an unguarded 
cliff which fell away some three hundred feet to 
the rocks below. But the baby's mother gazed 
placidly at him from a short distance away, and, 
long before I could reach him, the child turned 
and toddled back to the maternal arms. Guar- 
dian angels, must, I think, be kept fully occupied 
on these mountaintops. 

Our "boy," Paulmung, was a Lepcha, of ex- 
pansive smile and explosive utterance. When 



Paulmung made the simplest remark, we were 
invariably startled as if a child had sprung from 
hiding and shouted, "Boo!" But his innocent 
face, giving no indication of any attempt at fri- 
volity, allayed our suspicions, and we com- 
manded ourselves in time to make a dignified 

There are several good English schools in 
Darjiling, and the climate agrees so well with 
the Western children that the schools have a 
large attendance of rosy-cheeked boys and girls, 
bright-eyed and energetic, who form a marked 
contrast to the pale, hollow-eyed, listless English 
children of the plains. 

One of the attractions of Darjiling is the ba- 
zaar where the weekly market is held. There, 
among the laughing, tumultuous throng, one 
may see every product, human and otherwise, 
of these mountains. Especially interesting to us 
was the "butterflyman's" box of Nature's jew- 
els, for there are about five thousand varieties 
of butterflies and moths in the Darjiling Dis- 
trict, many of gorgeous beauty. Perhaps the 
mountain air made us almost as much interested 
in the luscious papois, a kind of melon, which 
we would carry home by armfuls, always to find 
on eating them that we had not brought enough. 

Snowy mountain peaks extended all around 


us, but they were often obscured by the rain 
clouds which are thick at that time of year, and 
it was many days after our arrival before we 
saw Mt. Kinchinjunga, which, when not dimmed 
by clouds, is the glory of Darjiling scenery. 

The hope of seeing Kinchinjunga by the sun- 
rise light lured us to a night excursion up Mt. 
Senchal, a fine viewpoint. At three o'clock in 
the morning we started off for the long, dark 

On the top of Senchal we crouched down be- 
hind a low wall to avoid the bitterly cold wind, 
and waited for the sunrise. As the light grew 
in the east, we peered forth from our protecting 
wall to see if the day were clear. Not a cloud 
in the sky, and the light grew and grew, till 
the far-reaching snow line burst upon our 
vision ! Mt. Everest was there, but the one hun- 
dred miles of distance reduced his imperial 
height until we could not surely distinguish him 
from among the many other thumb-tips of snow 
which he resembled. But Kinchinjunga! Su- 
perbly proud, supremely fair, she rose above 
them all! Silent, awestruck, we watched while 
great bands of color heralded the sun. One by 
one they covered the mountains until the majes- 
tic, cleft peak of Kinchinjunga, and even her 
glaciers and icy crags, were plainly visible. Rose 



pink, clear gold, rich purple, they glowed; then, 
softly, softly, lavender, silver gray, delicate 
amber, and the faint blush of the apple blossom. 
Now over the mountains came the sun exulting 
in his handiwork and smiling proudly down on 
those loved children of his, who, of all on earth, 
lie nearest to his heart, until they flashed back at 
him such radiant glances that we turned away 
with dazzled eyes. 

In making the homeward trip, we took a 
shorter but rougher path down the mountainside 
through woods where were orchids by the hun- 
dreds hanging among the limbs, and where the 
continuous dampness had so clothed the trunk 
and branches of every tree with moss that it 
seemed a great forest of nothing but moss and 

As we came out into the highway, we saw 
fluttering in the wind, from the branches of the 
trees, hundreds of Buddhist prayer papers, short, 
thin strips of paper in block type which are hung 
on trees so that the wind may blow the senti- 
ment to heaven. All the prayers have one word- 
ing, "Om, Mani Padme, Om!" which, translated, 
is, "Hail to the Holy One whose jewel is the 
Lotus! Hail!"— the "Holy One" meaning 

Reasoning that the prayers would be wafted 


upward just as well if a few of the papers were 
in our private possession, we climbed the bank 
and brought away a handful of the curious 

We sought out the Bhutea Bhusti (village), 
where the temples of the Thibetan lamas are lo- 
cated. The first sight that greeted us was the 
prayer-pole of the Buddhist. These poles were 
numerous throughout the settlement with their 
fluttering paper rags which are supposed to keep 
away the evil spirits. The clownish lamas, not 
in the least resembling Kim's gentle, dignified, 
old saint, show you their treasures with childish 
delight: the dirty idol, dressed in cheap tinsel, 
the great chair, with torn, soiled covering, on 
which sits the Grand Lama, and the trumpet 
made of a dead lama's thigh bone hollowed 
out and one end pasted over with tissue pa- 
per. We gazed with more interest at the col- 
lection of ancient Sanscrit writings wrapped 
carefully in cloths, and at the ponderous "Wheel 
of Life." 

In the vestibule were two or three large 
prayer wheels, cylinders mounted on long sticks 
and filled with prayer papers. The lamas turn 
these wheels rapidly, a bell sounding at each 
revolution, and repeat monotonously, but with 
a wide grin, *'0m, Mani Padrne, Om!" We gave 



the first lama a fee for saying his prayers for us, 
but when all the other lamas rushed up and 
begged us to pay them for saying their prayers, 
we refused. 

Climbing up the hill again to Darjiling proper, 
we stopped to watch the people weaving, with 
their simple, hand-made tools, the strong Thi- 
betan cloths which are highly prized throughout 

Desiring to see at close range a tea garden, 
we visited "Happy Valley," one of the many tea 
gardens of the district. Captain Keble, the 
genial proprietor, took us through the plantation, 
showing us the garden and the up-to-date fac- 
tory, and making the various processes clear 
to us. 

Before we finally left Darjiling, we had sev- 
eral more glimpses of Kinchinjunga from various 
points, one with the brilliant moonlight full on 
the snows — a vision ineffably sublime and so far 
above our horizon that it seemed more of heaven 
than of earth. 

On our journey down to the plains we 
all, with one accord, voiced Mr. Ruskin's sen- 
timent : 

"The mountains seem to have been built for 
the human race, as at once their schools and ca- 



thedrals; full of treasures of illuminated manu- 
script for the scholar, kindly in simple lessons 
for the worker, quiet in pale cloisters for the 
thinker, glorious in holiness for the wor- 



WE were at dinner in the Medak bun- 
galow when there stepped into the 
room a tall figure. His right thumb, 
severed near the wrist save for half an inch of 
skin, hung loosely from his hand, the blood 
spouting fiercely. He was so smeared with blood 
that until he spoke I did not recognize him as our 
own Arab peon, Ibrahim, usually the most im- 
maculate and dandified of fellows. In a drunken 
quarrel, his father had struck at his heart with 
a sword. With upraised arm, Ibrahim had 
warded the blow, and, although he had saved 
his life, he had received several severe gashes. 
As I rushed him to the hospital for treatment, the 
father ran up and begged me to make his child 
well ! 

Ibrahim's thumb soon became as good as new 
except for a slight stififness, though I fear he 
still disobeys the Prophet's teachings in regard 
to alcoholic beverages. 

Every day the unyielding rigidity of the caste 


system was thrust upon us. Narsamma, an old 
beggar woman of the goldsmith caste, one of 
the highest, fell and broke her leg, terribly 
lacerating the flesh. She was brought to us with 
the wound in the shocking condition usually 
found in the East — plastered over with cowdung 
poultices and riddled with maggots. The poor 
creature's system had become so saturated with 
the poison that she was too ill to hold up her 
head. Her caste people who had brought her to 
us promised to provide her with food, as we 
knew she would take nothing from our Christian 
hands. For a few days all went well, then her 
erstwhile caste friends said: "We have done 
enough for her; she is nothing to us," and they 
refused to bring more food. When I told her 
she would die unless she would accept food from 
us, she replied simply: "I cannot break my caste." 
So we sent messengers to Medak begging the 
village goldsmith to give us food for the sick 
old woman. In this way we succeeded in getting 
enough for her and Narsamma became well and 
fairly strong. 

Two months later she came back to us, plump 
and smiling, to bring us a thank-offering of rice 
and flowers. 

A lovely young girl led her mother into our 
hospital courtyard. It was pitiful to see the 



elder woman's panic and terror and to hear her 
shrieks: "Oh, the dreadful white faces! The 
dreadful white faces! L am afraid!" But the 
daughter smilingly soothed her, saying: "Don't 
be afraid, little Mother! They won't hurt you; 
they will make you well." ^ At last we learned the 
trouble. The mother was suffering from a hor- 
rid cancer of the breast. It had been neglected 
so long that it required very careful treatment, 
and after an operation I kept the patient in the 
hospital for several weeks. During that time 
she learned to love and trust us. About four 
years later, this same woman staggered into the 
dispensary, looking so wan and sad that my heart 
sank, for I felt sure the dreadful disease had re- 

"No," she said, showing me the straight, 
clean scar where the cancer had been, "I have 
not come for your medicine but for your love," 
and she threw herself into my arms and wailed 
out her sorrow. 

Her daughter, while performing some simple 
household task, had suddenly dropped dead. We 
remembered well the gentle, beautiful girl, and 
we grieved with the heartbroken mother. This 
high-caste Hindu woman had walked alone 
twenty-two miles through the jungle, fording 
deep streams and braving the hot sun and the 


Medak Zevana Hospital, prayer corner, surgical ward. 
Dr. ]Munson with patients. 


wild beasts, simply that she might hear us tell 
her that we loved her and were sorry for her. 

I had heard much in the West of the oriental 
lepers who kept a distance between themselves 
and the rest of the world by their cry, "Unclean ! 
Unclean!" but in India, though a man be posi- 
tively falling to pieces with leprosy and yet have 
money enough, many a girl is glad to marry him. 
Almost every day I treated lepers at our hospital, 
and I never noticed the slightest shrinking on 
the part of their friends who had come with 

A leper woman, the wife of the richest man 
in Ramyanpett, came to our hospital; her at- 
tendance was of the best, her palanquin of the 
most luxurious, and her silks and jewels of the 
choicest, all this in sad contrast to her face eaten 
away with the dreadful disease, the blurred eyes, 
the ulcerating hands and feet, the awful stench 
of leprosy uncleansed. Even as these thoughts 
came to me, she stepped forward; and, salaam- 
ing, embraced me heartily. I succeeded in my 
effort not to shrink from her, but, like Lady 
Macbeth, I felt that not even the "perfumes of 
Araby" could ever make me quite clean again. 

As I heard her story of distress and discour- 
agement, my eyes filled with tears and my throat 
ached with a longing to weep with her; never- 



theless, I could but marvel at her companions, 
as they sat beside her, one with her arms about 
the leprous woman's neck and the other resting 
against her knee, fanning her vigorously, neither 
seeming to mind in the least the close contact 
with the unfortunate creature. 

The prevalence of hydrophobia among the 
pariah dogs gives rise to many cases of this ter- 
rible disease in the village people; but, with their 
usual fatalism and lack of imagination in regard 
to the future, the wound caused by the bite of a 
dog suffering from rabies is carelessly treated, 
if it be not altogether neglected. 

One of our coolies, a lad of thirteen, when 
bitten by a mad dog, cauterized the wound with a 
burning torch and told nobody about it. A month 
later, his mother brought him to us in the last 
stages of hydrophobia. She was a widow and 
he her only son. In the West that would mean 
much, but in India it is all; the son provides 
for his parents in their old age, and is the one 
being who can pray their souls into paradise after 
death. I told the mother as gently as I could 
that her boy would live but a few hours longer. 
She gazed at me a moment before she compre- 
hended. Then, with a look of the wildest anguish 
and before any of us could prevent her, she 
rushed to the side of the struggling, panting 



victim of rabies, and placed her arm over his 
frothing mouth. Again and again he savagely- 
bit the limb. The poor mother shrieked with 
hysterical laughter at the sight of the dripping 
blood ; and so, laughing and sobbing, beating her 
breast and tearing handfuls of hair from her 
head, she was led away by the village friends who 
had come with her. I had begged them to let 
me treat her wounds, but they refused, saying: 
"Why should she live? Will there be aught in 
life for her when her only son is dead?" While 
my professional spirit urged me to save her life, 
my woman's heart told me they had spoken well. 
But hospital scenes are not all so darkly shaded. 
One day a palanquin came swinging into the 
compound on the shoulders of four bearers, 
chanting as they walked. 

A young princess from Hyderabad had come 
for medical treatment. Her costume of silks and 
velvets and jewels brought out strongly her East- 
ern beauty ; and her tall, handsome husband, rid- 
ing beside her on a spirited Arabian horse, 
added, in his splendid costume, just the right 
finishing touch to the picture. The moment I 
saw the begum with her shy smile I loved her; 
and I shall not soon lose the memory of her 
charming manners and affectionate gratitude. 
When she laid her head on my shoulder in a fare- 



well embrace, she said : "In Hyderabad they told 
me that the foreigners would kill me. I an- 
swered: 'I have seen their smiling faces; they 
would kill no one.' Still I was afraid until I 
felt your loving arms about me. Now, behold! 
I am well and strong. Chee! (snapping her 
fingers in the air) I am not dead. I am full of 
life and happy, happy!" 

The begum before she left us paid well for 
her treatment, and a few days later an immense 
basket of fine Hyderabad fruits came for the 
Mem Sahibs. Not all the thank-offerings of the 
Indian people were so acceptable. Sometimes 
they would put a strong-smelling, oily brown 
perfume on a bit of cotton and stuff it in our 
ears or smear it over our fresh shirtwaists till we 
were sights to behold. Sometimes they would 
take a rose or other flower and, breaking off the 
stem to within an inch of the petals, fasten it be- 
hind our ears or inside our neckbands. 

Two hundred and sixty-three miles by train 
and jungle cart, the daughter of a rich merchant 
had come to Medak to receive our treatment; 
for, two years ago, when she was in great peril, 
God had given her life at our hands. This time 
the peril was more to her unborn child than to 

"Why doesn't the doctor do this and this?" 


whispered the patient's friends, naming the in- 
cantations and barbarous procedures common in 
such cases, or **The doctor will kill her, let us 
take her away," and the like, but through it all 
came the gray-haired mother's trembling, half- 
doubting tones, "No, no; she saved my child be- 
fore; let us trust her now" — and then came the 
blissful moment when the nurse placed a fine 
baby boy very much alive in the arms of the 
rapturous grandmother. 

With a great clanking of jewels and rustle of 
fine fabrics, Kulsimbhi's family entered the hos- 
pital, Kulsimbhi carried gently in their midst. 
Her left ankle, swollen to four times its natural 
size, was tairly riddled with maggots, and she 
was extremely emaciated and dangerously weak. 

While we discussed her case, the paJm boxes 
were opened and all set to chewing on the pahn 
(a betel leaf filled with betel nut, cardamom, 
pepper leaf, and lime of the mussel shell, all 
folded into a tiny packet fastened with cloves). 

I feared Kulsimbhi might lose her foot alto- 
gether, but careful examination showed there 
was hope of saving it. After the operation, 
she felt so much better that for many minutes 
she laughed and wept for joy, declaring that our 
name should "spread over the earth in its great- 



The foot healed at last and, though Kulsimbhi 
was still very weak, I felt that she could be 
safely discharged from the hospital. 

Months later, she came again to see us, and I 
should never have guessed that the brisk, young, 
bejeweled beauty, who tripped lightly into the 
courtyard, her eyebrows and eyelashes black 
with antimony, her forehead and cheeks yellow 
with saffron specked with gold leaf, and her 
nails red with henna, was the sad-eyed, tired 
little Kulsimbhi of former days. She was plump 
and good to look upon and her foot was abso- 
lutely well, the only sign of the old disease being 
the white scar line left by my knife. 

My heart was especially glad when I could 
discharge, "cured," one of my worst hospital 
cases, a Mahomedan boy who, falling from a 
tree, had suffered severe concussion of the brain. 
He had been unconscious for three days when 
he was brought to me, and such a bruised, 
swollen head! Many a sleepless night hour I 
spent in my anxiety over him; but slowly im- 
provement set in; a smile came to his mother's 
eyes, red and sunken with constant weeping; 
and three weeks after he came to us he was as 
dear and bright a twelve-year-old as you could 
have found in Medak. I called him "Chota 
Sepoy" (little soldier) because whenever I en- 


The country cart stopping at Medak Hospital 

Medak touring outJit 


tered the room he would rise with a smile and a 
most military salute, "Salaam, Mem Sahib!" 

As his family left us for their village, fifteen 
or twenty miles away, his mother drew her hands 
softly over my cheeks, in a pretty, Indian form 
of caress. 

"When I started to bring my boy to you," 
she said, "all the village people cried: 'He is 
dying; if you take him to the foreigners they 
will kill him more quickly, that is all. Their 
medicine is not for us!' but I brought him in 
faith, and now, behold! I will show the village 
people what you have done and will say : 'See my 
boy! Did the foreigners kill him? Did they? 
No, they are more kind, more tender than a 

But it is useless to make a reputation in India. 
A few weeks after this some people who had 
heard of the boy's cure brought us an old lady 
of eighty who had broken her hip two years 
ago and had not walked since, and a boy born 
deaf and dumb, for "Thou art like unto Allah," 
they said with bov^^ed heads and clasped hands. 
"Even the dead rise at thy touch." 

Baby Prema Divanna had been a pet through- 
out the compound ever since her history began. 

Before her birth, her mother, a Brahman 
woman of middle age, came to the hospital ac- 


companied by a white-haired Brahman widow, 
her adoptive mother, who told us that ever since 
her adoption the younger woman had been in 
disgrace of one kind or another, and she now 
wished to hide the illegitimacy of her child, 
whose father was a temple priest. Notwith- 
standing all this, the old woman waited as pa- 
tiently and tenderly on the selfish, whining 
creature as an own mother might have done. 

One evening as the orthodox Brahman widow, 
shivering in the chilly air, with her one thin 
white garment drawn closely about her, crouched 
in the corner of the hospital veranda that had 
been set apart for her, we ventured sympathy: 
"We are very sorry all this trouble has come to 
you and made you sad." 

*'To me," she replied with a patient gesture, 
*'is no happiness and no sadness. I merely exist." 

She told us then that the ten children who had 
been born to her had died and that she and her 
husband had gone on a pilgrimage to the shrines 
of India ; that after her husband's death she had 
adopted the girl, who, later, had brought her so 
much trouble. 

"Do you believe that after your death you will 
see your husband and children?" we asked. 
"No," she replied decidedly, "not my children 
certainly. They were merely loaned to me; 



where they are now I do not know. My hus- 
band? Perhaps I shall see him, but from afar, 
for as he is a man he dwells near the gods." 

A few nights after this the old lady, becoming 
worried about her daughter's condition, took her 
little oil-lamp and an offering of rice into the 
garden, and, prostrating herself, called loudly 
on "Jesus Christ, the God of the Christians." 
It was by no means a conversion to Christianity, 
but among her millions of gods she was adding, 
for policy's sake, the God of the people who were 
ministering to her daughter in her illness. The 
daughter herself was calling on her own god, 
"Oh Siva, Siva, Siva!" when one of our nurses 
said, "Don't call on the Hindu gods! Tell your 
troubles to Jesus Christ!" 

"Who?" inquired the woman. The nurse re- 
peated the name and gave a short explanation 
of what the name meant. Without comment the 
heathen w^oman continued her wail, "Jesus 
Christ, Jesus Christ!" 

After the child was born the nurse told us 
that the mother had resolved to kill it at the 
first opportunity. However, we watched the 
baby carefully, and when the time came for the 
patient to leave the hospital I said to her : "Will 
you sell your baby to me for two rupees?" 

"Sell it!" she replied. "I will pay you two 


rupees if you will take it and save me the 
trouble of casting it into the river." So the baby 
became ours and we named her Prema Divanna 
(Love's Blessing). 

Inherently superstitious, the Indian people 
find strange ways of deceiving the devil-gods 
whom they fear with pitiable terror. A Brahman 
woman brought to our hospital her ten-year-old 
daughter who was suffering from so slight an 
ailment that I was surprised when the mother 
fell at my feet in great agitation and begged me 
to save the life of her child. 

*'0h, save her! Save her! Save her!" she 
cried hysterically. When I at last made her un- 
derstand that her daughter's life was not in 
danger, I asked her why she was so troubled 
about such a light matter. 

''Do you know my child's name?" she inquired 
tragically. "It is Adivi!" 

''Adivi" means "jungle," or, in American par- 
lance, "backwoods," and I marveled at the 
answer, for the Brahmans usually name their 
children for some goddess, or give them some 
such name as "Moonbeam," or "Lotus Lily," 
or "Jewel." 

"Adivi!" I repeated. "Why have you given 
her such a name as that?" Then she told me 
her story: 



"Sons and daughters were born to me and I 
gave them beautiful names and loved them. The 
Devil grew envious and took them from me. 
Then this daughter came and I said to myself, 
*I will name her "Mistress Dung-heap," and will 
drag her through the filth of the stable, for then 
surely the Devil will never know I love her.' 
But I* could not bring myself to this. I com- 
promised; I named her 'J^"S^^' o^ 'Useless 
Earth,' and now, even now, see, I tremble for 
fear she also will leave me!" 

In a few days, however, the girl was quite 
well, and the mother, in a grateful farewell to 
me, cried out the Indian form of blessing, "May 
you have seven sons and may your stomach al- 
ways be cool!" (May you never have fever!) 

The first attitude of the Indian people toward 
us is usually an attitude of suspicion and dis- 
like. We are foreigners; we are white; we are 
different. Some of the people even go to the 
trouble to preach distrust of us in the open ba- 
zaar. We had an enemy of this sort in a young 
man whose father was a hakim. The influence 
of this youth, who could not say enough against 
us and against our hospital, kept hundreds of 
patients from coming to us. His sister, a girl 
of fourteen, became ill with typhoid fever; the 
hakim father happened to be out of town, and 



the frightened mother brought the child to us. 
She had been in our hospital one night when the 
father returned. He was very angry and de- 
manded his daughter. I told him plainly that 
only Western treatment could save his daugh- 
ter's life, and begged him to leave her with us. 
He replied: 

"You will murder her; I shall have her well 
and strong within a few days." 

He took the child from us, and in just three 
days she died. 

Months passed and I saw nothing more of the 
hakim, but his active enmity and his son's con- 
tinued. Then, again, one evening the hakim's 
wife came to me, weeping bitterly. 

She said her grandson was dying; that they 
had done everything to no purpose, and begged 
me to help him. The sick child was the new- 
born and only son of my worst enemy. As the 
little creature had been born prematurely, and 
weighed only two pounds, it, of course, required 
very special warmth and care, but I found it 
lying on the mud floor of the hut without a 
stitch of covering on its body, and with all the 
winds of a January night — and January nights 
in India are cold — blowing over it. The babe 
was chilled to unconsciousness. I seized it at 
once and, holding it close to my breast, ran for 



the hospital. For hours I thought the wee boy 
would never again open his eyes, but at last the 
treatment took effect and he stirred cozily in his 
warm blankets. Then how we fought for that 
little life! 

We made him a pretty "Baby Bunting" suit, 
a coat reaching to the feet and high boots reach- 
ing to the hips, both of baby blue flannel inter- 
lined with an inch thickness of cotton wool, 
lined and piped with baby blue silk, and tied 
with baby blue ribbons. With the aid of these 
doll clothes and of three warm blankets, we kept 
the baby's temperature up to the proper mark; 
and, knowing that if a moment's carelessness oc- 
curred the little flicker of life might die out, we 
carefully and personally supervised everything 
done for him. 

Through it all we had to contend with the 
tearful resistance of the baby's family, who did 
not quite dare to take the child from us, but who 
daily prostrated themselves at our feet and 
begged us to conform to their customs in the 
treatment of the babe. My reply was always 
the same: "Your customs were killing him. Let 
us try our customs!" 

At the end of three months, when the hot 
weather made it safe to do so, I gave him back, 
plump and bonny, to his parents. When I left 



Medak he was a sturdy little son of whom any 
Indian mother might be proud; and the saving 
of his life gave his parents full faith in us. 

As proof of this faith, the young father, 
shortly after I had resigned the baby to his own 
people, brought me his wife who was seriously 
ill. As he laid her on the bed before me, he said 
in trembling tones: *'She is your daughter. I 
leave her with you in faith and hope." 

When, well and happy, she left the hospital, 
the young man fell on his knees and kissed my 
feet, sobbing out his gratitude. 

We have no warmer friend in India this day 
than our once arch-enemy. 

It seemed to me that Ramamma would never 
recover her sight. Ramamma was a Hindu lady 
of nobility who had been blind for a year and 
had been treated for two months in our hospital. 
Then came a day when dimly but surely she 
could see. Slowly her sight returned, and we 
rejoiced with her happy family and her happy 

Her husband and son, a precocious boy of 
twelve years with an almost English face, 
proudly brought us an Indian pony as a present. 
The man salaamed courteously as he presented 
the pony; but the boy, more profuse in his grati- 
tude, finished a long presentation speech by sud- 



denly prostrating himself at my feet. I was 
not prepared for this action, and, as I stood, one 
of my feet was in advance of the other. The 
youthful courtier looked up helplessly: *'Why, 
Honorable Lady Doctor, how can I kiss your feet 
when they are not together? Put them to- 
gether, please." 

As I obligingly brought my feet into close 
apposition, he grasped them and holding them 
tightly, he gently bumped his forehead on them 
several times. 

The phrase in Scripture, "because of his im- 
portunity," I readily understood after a brief 
acquaintance with a certain impudent, lovable 
knave, the ten-year-old son of Rassalbhi, a Ma- 
homedan woman, who for many years had 
patronized our Temple of Healing. 

In the midst of afternoon work at my desk 
comes a voice over the lower half of my door: 

"Salaam, Doctor Mem Sahib! Will your 
Honor from the greatness of your heart grant 
to me, Hassan, the son of Rassalbhi, one small 
request? My mother has for many long days 
felt weakness upon her and she wished me to 
fetch her the strength-giving medicine which I 
v/as to call for last month." 

"But," I expostulate, knowing that his moth- 
er's condition is far from serious, "why have 



you come in the afternoon? I have often told 
you that the dispensary is closed in the after- 
noon; you know I am busy with other work at 
that time; and when you live so near you should 
come in the morning-." 

The solemn, oriental eyes take on a reproach- 
ful expression, 

"I make to you a thousand salaams, Doctor 
Mem Sahib! I kiss your feet; I am your slave; 
will your Honor give me the medicine?' 

For five minutes I reason, command, threaten, 
not dreaming to escape the dispensary, but hop- 
ing to make him admit his error. His reply 
is unvarying and beyond argument : "A thousand 
salaams! Will you give me the medicine?" My 
time is precious and, as I have often done before 
under like circumstances, I surrender ignomin- 
iously. When I hand the boy the filled bottle, 
he promptly asks me if I will give him a pair of 
shoes. In spite of his mother's urgent need of 
medicine he seems to have no intention of hurry- 
ing home. 

''These are excellent shoes," he declares, spy- 
ing my bedroom slippers. "I should like these." 

"But they are much too large for you, child." 

"Oh no, they are very elegant !" and he clumps 
around in them with manifest enjoyment. 

I do not yield to him so readily in the matter 


of shoes as of medicine, but let him clump while 
I go on with my work; for I soon learned by 
sad experience the value of the Western shoe 
and clung desperately to the remnants of mine. 
Although your Eastern shoes have a number of 
fine points, they stick up so aggressively through 
the heel that, in the absence of any trustworthy 
cobbler, it requires at least a folded postal card 
to keep them properly modified. The soles are 
slightly less than an inch thick — saving in 
leather is no object — and some day when, your 
full trust reposing in those shoes, you have 
walked half a mile along a damp road, you feel 
a sudden and unusual sense of lightness and 
ease. Looking down you find that the sole has 
been left behind in the last mud puddle, and 
you sigh over the inadequacy of India's glue. 
One ought not to complain, I suppose, when the 
shoemaker will sit down on your back veranda — 
the shoemaker is the outcaste of India and is not 
allowed to sit on the front veranda where the 
dhirzl or tailor, a high-caste man, has his sewing 
machine — and make you any number of shoes at 
only sixty cents a pair with all that extra leather 
of the sole thrown in. 

Queer and original ideas the patients some- 
times gain from the Bible stories. We asked an 
intelligent high-caste Hindu woman, who had 



spent a few days in our hospital, to tell us the 
story of the Prodigal Son. This was her ver- 

"A man had two sons, and the younger son 
asked his father to give him his portion of the 
inheritance. This the father did. Then the son 
went to a far country and rapidly squandered 
his money in gambling, drinking, and a bad life. 
Finally, with the few rupees he had left, he 
bought china and set up a china shop in the ba- 
zaar. But he was very lazy and fell asleep. 
While he was asleep he stretched cut his foot and 
lo! the china fell to the ground and broke into 
little pieces. Then what should he do? He was 
obliged to ask employment as a swineherd. But 
he had not enough to eat, so he stole for him- 
self the food of the swine. The master, having 
noticed that the swine grew thinner and thin- 
ner, spied on the bad son, and found him eating 
their food. Whereupon he gave his unfaithful 
servant a great blow and a painful, which 
brought him to his senses, and he said to him- 
self, *I will arise and go to my father,' " the nar- 
rator completing the tale as it is written in the 

A Brahman woman who heard the story re- 
marked: *'It is a good tale and well told. The 
Hindu religion is ours and so we pray to our 



own gods, but your religion is better, for, see, 
will a Hindu father forgive a son that has dis- 
honored him? No! When anybody is in trouble, 
do our people give him help? No, indeed! They 
speak fair words from the shastras and tell him 
to go. Those who have much keep it all to them- 
selves like a lamp hid in an earthen pot, but the 
Christians put their light on high places and it 
shines on everybody with love and kindness and 
good gifts." 

Every one of my readers has at some time, 
I suppose, laughed over English as spoken by 
the East Indian. 

These are letters that have come to us from 

our patients: 

From Hyderabad. 
To THE Doctor Mem Sahib, 

My Dear Respected Madam, 
Honored Sir, 

I most humbly and respectfully beg to state a month 
past that I received a letter from my relation containing 
with following subject — that your husband has a pimple 
in his chest and he is dangerously ill, come as soon as you 
can possible. So at once I started from Medak to City 
without your embracings and kind permission. Please 
excuse me, I will come again near you, after the opera- 
tion of my husband's pimple, because I had got the most 
satisfaction that your good remedy about the pain of my 
liver. You must send the reply to the following address : 
Your most humbly and faithfully, 

(Signed) O. K. — 


Great and Respected Queen, 
My dear Sir : 

Send advise written plain and quick by my chaprassi. 
I sliow my not having much sense one day because as I 
was going to see Tanks through the jungle, I felt very 
sick and tight. My servant said to me. Sir, lie down and 
I will give you berries from a tree, then all tightness will 
go. My respected Doctor Lady, my servant's words came 
true. I did eat and my whole Enatomy had never tight- 
ened since. Send your valuable drugs to make me tight 
again. I am lying down with no more strong on one 
side than the other side. Feet and legs to will not obey 
too quickly. No much life in my body. 

Yours most humble and faithfully, 


A healthy looking, young Mahomedan called 
at the dispensary one day and made the follow- 
ing startling statement in English: "Doctor 
Madam, you will please make me careful ex- 
amination. I am suffering a fatal attack of am- 

Sometimes our hospital pictures are all sun- 
light and laughter. 

Poshamma, the hospital cook, came one day 
and, gravely, but with a peculiar twinkle in 
her eye, asked me to come and see "a new 

There on the cook-house steps close by the 
dispensary door sat an enormous gray monkey 
with black face and tail-tip, eating leisurely and 



with evident enjoyment some bread which kind- 
hearted Poshamma had given him, his self-satis- 
fied expression showing plainly that he realized 
his descent from the intrepid builders of Rama's 



ALMOST as interesting to me as the hos- 
pital were the schools for boys and 
girls. When I came to Medak, I could 
scarcely credit the information that the filthy, 
ignorant coolie men and women of the com- 
pound were the parents of the neat, intelligent 
lads and lassies in the schools. These coolies, 
as might be expected from a race subject for 
centuries, and with a religion having no con- 
nection with morality, are born liars and thieves, 
and, worse, unashamed of their shortcomings. 

Knowing this fact, I was surprised one day to 
hear the schoolgirl daughter of a coolie say, with 
a proud toss of her head and a flash of her eyes : 
"Do you think I would lie? No, indeed! A lie 
is not only wicked but is silly and cowardly!" 
Possibly the little miss may not be able to live 
up to her ideals at all times — thus differing in 
no wise from the rest of us mortals — but I loved 
her for the pride of her tone and for the hope 
she represented. 



The poorest of our Western school children 
would feel a deep pity for these little folk whose 
life is a study in simplicity, their bed, a blanket 
on a wooden floor ; their chair and table, another 
wooden floor; their dress, two thin garments; 
and their food, rice and chilis. The pity of the 
Western children would be wasted, however, for 
frequently what we Westerners consider the 
necessaries of life are regarded as oppressive 
burdens by these people. 

Our little folk find much to make them happy. 
They are happier still when a wedding is in 
progress, and happiest of all when the wedding 
is a double wedding, such as took place during 
my first year at Medak. The brides, garlanded 
with flowers, and with faces modestly drooping, 
were charming in white saris and yellow and 
green satin jackets and skirts, while the bride- 
grooms, in white muslin with gay, colored scarfs 
draped over the left shoulder, and also wearing 
garlands of flowers, presented a dignified, manly 
appearance. After the service, powdered spices 
were thrown by the jovially disposed guests into 
the eyes of the brides and grooms, and they were 
showered with rice as they climbed into the bul- 
lock tonga, which was conducted with great re- 
joicing all about the compound, the shouts and 
laughter every now and then giving place to the 



loud and ringing wedding song, Tsahla Santo- 
shamoo! (Great Joy.) 

Durganna, formerly a Dacoitie boy, is one of 
our big band of schoolboys. The Dacoities are 
born to the occupation of robbery and murder, 
but they have a social standing and are as proud 
of their work as any Brahman. When one re- 
alizes that they are trained to all the steps of 
deceit and crime as soon as their baby brains 
will grasp connected thoughts, one feels only pity 
for the victims of this evil system. After all, 
the Dacoities are not entirely different from the 
rest of the mild-mannered, affectionate Indian 

A tall, pleasant-faced lad used to lie at my feet 
in the evening and, by the light of my punkah- 
lamp, slowly trace with his fingers the Telugu 
characters in his reading-book. Every little 
while he would look up and ask me some ques- 
tion about what he was reading. This was Dur- 
ganna. From his birth he had been trained in 
all the wicked arts of the Dacoities, but when he 
was yet a child his father was convicted of a 
crime and imprisoned. This was during the ter- 
rible famine of '96 and '97, and Durganna and 
his mother, in despair, sought work at the 
Christian "Famine Camp." Durganna became 
an errand boy and slowly but surely the evil of 


Boys' playground, Medak 

V--i^v S>i 

■^^ ,ij 

Girls' playground, Medak 


his education was supplanted by good and he 
became a Christian, ambitious to be an evan- 
gelist. Long and hard he worked at his first 
reading-book, and then at all the books that fol- 
lowed, until his triumph came when he brilliantly 
passed his entrance examinations for the theo- 
logical training school. 

Dina was a mite of a girl who was worse than 
motherless. For a few rupees which had been 
offered her by a Mahomedan zenana, the mother 
consented to sell Dina as a slave if she could but 
steal her from the school. This we intended to 
prevent, if possible, for, when our Mission took 
Dina, her mother signed papers forfeiting all her 
rights in the child. 

One day Dina seemed very much frightened 
and for several days thereafter kept close to Miss 
Richardson, her school-superintendent, of whom 
she was very fond. At last she confided the 
cause of her terror. 

"My mother came again in the night," she 
whispered in awed tones. "Always Ijefore, she 
has offered me sweetmeats if I would run away 
with her, but I told her I loved you too well to 
leave you. This time she was very cross with 
me, and when she went away she said she would 
come again some night and choke me to death 
unless I would go with her, but I didn't go !" 



However, we watched Dina very carefully, 
and after several months her mother gave up her 
fruitless attempts to steal her. 

Our Jesumani (Jewel of Jesus), a young Bible 
woman and the bride of one of our leading evan- 
gelists, was but three years of age when she 
was dedicated by her parents, in return for a val- 
uable piece of land and a yearly offering of rice, 
to the life of a devil priestess, a life almost too 
revolting for description. She was ten years 
old when the Mission found her. Her long, un- 
combed, unwashed hair and the bits of leather 
tied about her neck told of the life of shame be- 
fore her, and, according to custom, her parents 
were making ready to offer her as a sacrifice to 
her profession. This meant that, during a 
drunken revelry of the villagers, the child would 
herself be made drunk and given over to the 
sensual brutality of the devil priest. After that 
she would become the common property of all 
unscrupulous men. However, obtaining support 
for the child and for her family, also, as she was 
their mainstay, and overcoming all the stubborn 
opposition that bigotry and hatred of foreign in- 
trusion could present, the Mission set her free. 
To-day, looking at Jesumani's happy face, it 
would be hard to realize that she confronted but 



a few years ago the most horrible fate that could 
befall a woman. 

Nerickshanna, another of our schoolgirls, was 
always a brave Christian soldier. A schoolmate 
starting home for vacation placed on her fore- 
head — thoughtless vanity her probable motive — 
a dot of vermilion, which is a sign of Hinduism. 
Nerickshanna spied the mark and rubbed it off 
with no gentle hand. 

"How dare you," she exclaimed indignantly, 
"adorn yourself with the sign of the heathen 
gods and thus disgrace our Lord Jesus!" 

Nerickshanna had an excellent memory, and 
often attempted to sing English songs she had 
heard (the child did not understand one word 
of English). Her favorite was "Little Alabama 
Coon," and she got the melody perfectly, singing 
lustily and with confidence : 

Go to seep, my lily pipanimbo, 
Unnerneaf ee siller, suller moon. 

She was in hospital with malaria when a baby 
born to one of the patients died before it had 
ever breathed. In her prayer that evening 
Nerickshanna pleaded with tears in her eyes: 
"O God, the baby that died to-day was never 
baptized, so I suppose it is in hell ; but wherever 
it is, dear God, please bless and take care of the 
sweet little baby!" 



A seven-year-old schoolboy fell from a high 
swing and broke his arm. An honest fraud was 
this same schoolboy. I allowed him to come into 
my room one day to play with the chessmen. 
When he went away I examined his arm to see 
if it were improving, and out from the sling 
dropped two of the knights. 

"Oh, my dear," I exclaimed, ''how could you 
steal from me ? Have I not always been good to 

His large eyes grew larger with injured in- 

"I stole them not," he protested, "they accrued 
to me from that game I was playing!" 

Then and there I took the boy's morals in 
hand and talked to him for five minutes for his 
soul's good. I had expected, at the end of my 
eloquent harangue, tears and repentance, but he 
gravely inquired: "If I had asked you for the 
little figures, would you have given them to 

"No," I replied. "They are part of an ex- 
pensive game." 

"Then," he concluded, clinching his argument, 
"if I had not taken them without permission, 
how else could I have obtained them?" 



ANOTHER tour, "penetrating the wilds !" 
It was late afternoon when we started 
out into unknown regions, unknown to 
our tonga driver as well as to ourselves, and 
more especially unknown to our ''guide." In 
spite of our slight anxiety at the thought of a 
moonless, starless, dinnerless, blanketless night 
in the jungle, and of the fact that jolting over 
the rough roads had made us all ''sorry in the 
stomach," as little Eva Adkin used to express it, 
we could not suppress our amusement at the 
guide's directions, our driver in bewilderment 
turning this way and that, retracing the path 
over and over, until we hysterically told him to 
ignore the statements of that will o' the wisp 
guide and to go straight ahead. 

At last, late at night, far away on a hill top, a 
light gleamed, and in glad relief we felt that 
people must be there who could give us an idea 
of our whereabouts. On reaching the light, 
what was our surprise and joy to find it our own 



lantern shining from the tent which had gone on 
ahead with the servants! A deHcious chicken 
curry and a steaming cup of tea soon compen- 
sated us for all our troubles. 

In the morning we were awakened by a 
woman's loud wailing near the tent, and we 
learned that a fourteen-year-old wife had been 
severely beaten by her husband and was lying 
prostrate on the ground just outside. While we 
soothed her with words and medicine, we could 
but compare this with an incident of the day 
before — the beginning of a Lombardy honey- 
moon ! On rounding a turn, we had seen a white 
bullock decked out, Lombardy fashion, with 
shreds of cloth of various gaudy colors and with 
bits of shell and looking-glass dangling over his 
forehead, surrounding his horns, and fluttering 
in the breeze. Just behind came a handsome, 
stalwart Lombardy holding close, in a vain en- 
deavor to comfort her, his young bride who was 
wailing bitterly as, in her new rainbow suit, with 
her thick blanket hiding her face, she left the 
shelter of her parents' home for that of her hus- 
band. Far off on the road above her, the family 
group waved their good-bye, the mother wailing 
as the daughter wailed, the more philosophic old 
grandmother bending over the mother as if 
speaking words of wisdom and comfort. As we 


Medak doctor on tour 

Medak nurse visiting the sick in a palanquin 


passed, the bride's curiosity got the better of her 
grief and she took her blanket from her face 
and stopped crying to have a good look at us. 

On our march to the second village, the rough- 
est of roads compelled us to walk miles in the 
noonday sun, and we all came off with sore feet 
and sun headaches. The baggage cart twice over- 
turned, breaking our tapestrung bed and injur- 
ing the driver. However, we managed to get at 
least a thin layer of straw on which to sleep for 
the next few nights, and the driver's wounds soon 

It was on this trip that we saw three large 
mango trees just beside the road, swarming with 
thousands of flying foxes. We were indeed glad 
to exchange the deafening noise — rustling, 
squeaking, squealing — and the suffocating ver- 
min-odor for the breezes sweeping across the 
rippling blue of the great lake by which we 
camped. It was a wild jungle spot, and the in- 
habitants of the neighboring village were terri- 
fied by the bold visits of tigers or leopards which 
struck down sheep and goats by the score. The 
savage creatures had left the remains of a few 
of their victims close by our camp, and it took 
some time to remove them. During that first 
afternoon, while the servants were cleaning the 



ground for the tent, they killed three venomous 

''Abo!" exclaimed our evangelist. ''That is a 
very bad sign; if patients see, they would not 

Distemper, too, had wrought havoc among 
the cows and goats, so, according to custom, a 
small boy led a sheep up and down before it 
should be sacrificed to Siva in an appeal for 

Certainly this little village seemed in sad dis- 
favor of its gods. At night so fierce a storm 
broke over us, that with all our strength we could 
scarcely hold up the tent poles, firmly fixed in 
the ground as they were; and it was early morn- 
ing before the strength of the gale subsided 
and we could lie down to sleep. Even then we 
were disturbed by the coolies loudly shouting and 
waving lights to scare away the leopards. 

On the first day at this village the patel lent 
us his gracious countenance for nine consecutive 
hours. As he watched the patients crowd for- 
ward with their various ailments he noted care- 
fully each new disease, and as we gave the medi- 
cine for it he would gravely tell us that some one 
of his household had this same disease and he 
would like medicine to cure it, until he had a 



sample — a very small one, you may be sure — of 
nearly everything in stock. 

As we returned to the tent, after an evening 
stroll, the servants told us that a cobra which 
had been killed in a village house had been 
brought for us to see. To catch the reptile a 
man had baited a strong hook with a toad, and 
when the snake, from its underground fastnesses, 
seized the bait, the man quickly jerked it forth 
to its death with the hook through its jaw. I 
gave the man a present and kept the snake for 
its skin. After holding an interesting autopsy 
over the creature, which measured six feet in 
length and five inches in circumference, we de- 
livered the skin to our *'boy" for preservation. 

A weird scene that night was the worship 
about an anthill. Once some god or other had 
been buried in an anthill, so now, in memoriam, 
on a certain day of the year, crowds of men bury 
a bit of molded clay in an anthill to represent 
the dead god and then march round and round 
the anthill carrying lighted torches and wailing 
loudly for the dead. 

About dawn next morning, we heard a rustle 
of the straw under our cots. Thinking that a 
pariah dog had found its way into the tent, we 
called the butler to come and drive it forth, when 
what was our surprise to see a tall, haggard man 



slowly emerge from beneath the cot. Gazing 
wildly at us for a moment, he gave a piercing 
shriek and darted from the tent. Later we 
learned his story. 

He was a rich, high caste Hindu merchant 
whom domestic unhappiness had driven mad. 
There is no confinement in India of "the dead 
who walk," as they call the insane, and this un- 
fortunate lunatic roamed about at will. Our 
people gave him food and otherwise treated him 
kindly ; so, throughout our stay at his village, he 
remained close by the tents, watching our every 
movement. We took care, however, that he did 
not again sleep beneath our bed. 

When we drove on to Dhoomkonda, the mad 
merchant ran and leaped and danced beside us 
all the way. Now and then, with a shrill 
scream, he would dash past the tonga at full 
speed, holding his head in his hands; then he 
would pause and quietly smoke as he walked be- 
side us, depositing matches or rice or flowers at 
our feet. It was all very pathetic! 

Dhoomkonda is ruled by a rajah and is very 
strong in its caste prejudices. There is not a 
single Christian in all that large town. How- 
ever, the people crowded upon us thickly, as 
usual. Five hundred and forty-six patients re- 
ceived treatment the first day. Our poor chch 



prassi, in his attempt to hold back the throng, 
was seized roughly by a big Mahomedan who 
tore to shreds the chaprassi's pink turban, his 
pride and joy. This insult was too much, and, in 
spite of belonging to a Christian camp, the cha- 
prassi engaged in a free fight then and there, 
which required much effort on our part to stay. 

In one of the villages we visited the people 
had never before seen a white face, and when we 
started out for a stroll they followed us respect- 
fully but with unveiled curiosity. We at last sat 
down beneath a tree and called the people to 
come and talk to us. As they timidly drew near 
one of the men, looking at our shoes, exclaimed: 
"How strange you people are ! You have white 
faces and black feet with no toes, and we know 
not whether you be men or women. Your fea- 
tures are like a woman's, but you hold your heads 
up and walk quickly and proudly as no woman 
would walk!" 

We were delighted to find here and there in 
our travels patients who had been treated by us 
before and who were loud in their gratitude. 
One, a Brahman girl who had been cured in our 
hospital, proudly showed us her garden. 

"See," she said, as she pointed to a tree or a 
flower, "I saw them in the garden at your hos- 



pital; when I came home I straightway planted 
the same kind in my own garden." 

While in hospital, this young Brahman girl, 
Parvatiamma, had won our hearts by her sweet 
disposition and patience under suffering. For 
years she had borne this pain which was destroy- 
ing all her joy in life. After coming to us, a very 
simple treatment had restored her health, but 
she could scarcely realize that she was cured. 
Her mother, an old Brahman widow with a keen 
sense of humor, said one day: "See my daugh- 
ter's face, see it! She is waiting for the pain 
and it will not come." Then she laughed joy- 
ously and the daughter laughed with her. 

At the same time that the Brahman girl, Par- 
vatiamma, w^as in the hospital, Sangamma, a 
Hindu low caste girl, v/as there also. Sangamma 
was a child-woman of sixteen, so thin and frail 
that our hearts ached for her. Her husband 
had deserted her for a stronger wife; her mother 
was dead; but the fond old father regularly 
brought her food and begged us to care for her 
and to make her well. 

"When she is well I will give you a rupee!" 
he said grandly, and his chest swelled with pride 
at the munificence of his promise. 

Sangamma got into trouble one day by unwit- 
tingly touching Parvatiamma's dress. The wrath 



of the Brahman was heavy on the head of the 
low caste girl, and there was much bathing and 
purifying in the wards. Sangamma, trembling 
with fear, promised to be careful in future, but 
her apologies seemed not to soften the wrath 
of the defiled Brahman. A few days later, as I 
sat by Parvatiamma's bed talking to her, she 
drew my head down to hers and whispered: "I 
shall aways be a Brahman, but I should like to 
be an unselfish Brahman, as you white people are 
unselfish Christians." 

When I made my rounds that evening, I heard 
little Sangamma crying weakly in her corner, 
for the day had been more trying than usual for 
her. As I started toward her to comfort her, I 
stopped amazed. Not seeing me behind her, Par- 
vatiamma who, less than a week before, had 
cursed Sangamma because their garments had 
accidentally come into contact, bent over the 
weeping child and, stroking her cheek, said 
gently: "Cry not, little one! Courage, dear! 
The pain will soon go and you will again be 

To those who know not India, this physical 
touching by a Brahman of one lower in caste 
may seem a slight thing, but I, understanding 
what it meant in loving self-sacrifice, felt too 



deeply touched for words and stole silently out 
of the ward. 

And now Parvatiamma showed us her pretty 
garden. She declared she was "as happy as a 
bulbul," and when we said good-bye to her she 
showered us with blessings and loaded us with 
gifts. In gay procession, we passed through 
the streets of the quaint old town with its crum- 
bling wall, our people following close after us, 
the "boy" in advance of the rest and bearing on 
his head an enormous plate of sugar, cocoanuts 
and oranges ; then the two nurses in costumes of 
crimson and orange and rose pink, and the vast 
majority of the villagers bringing up the rear. 

As we turned our faces toward Medak, we 
stopped at a village where we had toured three 
years before. At that time we were asked to 
visit a woman "with a marble in her breast." 
She was a Brahman, so she did not invite us to 
enter her house, but came to us on the outer 
veranda. I found upon examination that the 
"marble" was a cancer, and I explained fully the 
danger and the necessity for immediate opera- 
tion. Months passed, and then came Brahman 
Lakshmamma to our hospital. The "marble" had 
grown to a hideous sore, and she had at last 
decided to submit herself to our hands. 

"We have tried every other doctor and every 


remedy known to us," said her three grown sons, 
prostrating themselves at my feet, "but all have 
failed; now in perfect faith we come to you!" 

I performed the operation and Lakshmamma 
made a good recovery and went home. This 
time, when we came to her village, Lakshmamma 
herself met us far down the street and drew us 
into her house and into the courtyard close to 
her sacred Tulsi plant and to the shrine of her 
household god. Smilingly she beckoned to our 
nurses and assistants to follow, and then whis- 
pered something to her eldest son. He hastily 
left us and in a few minutes returned with all 
the Brahmans in the village at his heels. 

**I have invited them," said Lakshmamma, 
"to hear the sweet music of your Telugu Christ- 
ian hymns which I heard with such delight 
while in your hospital." 

Several hymns were sung, the people listen- 
ing in silent pleasure. Then Lakshmamma 
turned to Abbishakamma : 

"Now will you tell us the story of Elizabeth?" 
she requested. "It is good for these young 
women to hear." 

The dusk had settled over the landscape before 
we finally departed for our long trip home, with 
garlands about our necks and Lakshmamma's 
blessing in our ears. 



As next morning we drove through a thick 
woodland, we saw, strutting in the underbrush, 
a peacock, his beautiful feathers gleaming in the 
sunshine, and by his side his meek little hen and 
five baby chicks. 


WHEN, during my last year at Medak, 
the hot April sun made us all long for 
"the Hills," I decided to resist the 
temptation to go, keeping my money for an ex- 
tensive sightseeing trip on my way home to 
America. Hotter and hotter blazed the sun as 
the days dragged by, and the fitful breezes might 
have been from the depths of a furnace fire. All 
nature looked like a man burning v^ith high fever. 
The maidan was dried to a yellow-brown shade; 
the pipal trees held up to the sun rigid skeleton 
arms pleading for mercy ; the air shimmered with 
the intensity of the heat; the birds sat with 
wings outstretched and with beaks open, gasp- 
ing for air ; while not a sound broke the stillness 
except the lazy drone of the bees. On the damp 
floor of the bathroom our pet terriers found 
their only approach to comfort, hugging close 
the water pots and panting breathlessly. For 
myself, I tried to keep cool by thinking of May 
in the home country, its spring green of new 
grass, the violets and anemones scattering their 



beauty through the woods, and the apple blos- 
soms crowning the orchards with purity and 
sweetness. I tried to imagine the exhilarating 
air and the song of the nesting birds. Often it 
was too hot even for this, and my bursting head 
held only a dull longing that the day would end. 

Fortunately, people were too hot to realize 
they were sick, or else too hot to come for medi- 
cine when they were sick, so I had leisure to sit 
beneath the waving punkah and feel the pleasant 
stirring of the hot air. 

Then came Miss Hare, a Secunderabad mis- 
sionary, with some of her school children; Mr. 
Johnson and Mr. Adkin, two of our Medak mis- 
sionaries, returned from a tour in the outer dis- 
trict, and, all working together to help the little 
folks enjoy their vacation, we managed to have 
a very pleasant summer. 

Every nurse and servant tried to outdo every 
other in loving service to us, and through all 
the weary summer weeks their zeal and loyalty 
never flagged. 

The gramophone, mango feasts, especially 
elaborate dinners on the flat roof of the hospital, 
magic lantern stories, picnics at the old hill- fort 
and on the beautiful Huldi River, and various 
other festivities, kept us all busy in preparation 
and enjoyment. 



To add to the pleasure and excitement, the 
Yellaka people came one evening to visit us. The 
Yellakk people are a nomadic tribe of gypsy for- 
tune tellers, black-skinned, keen-witted, cheerful 
hearted, and clothed in uniform of Kipling's 
Giinga Din, who drive from village to village cat- 
tle and donkeys which, with baskets they have 
woven, and with other merchandise, they sell 
and thus earn a livelihood. The Telugu peasants 
generally have harsh, unmodulated voices, but I 
have rarely heard voices softer or more musical 
than the Yellakas'. One bright-eyed young 
woman begged me to have my fortune told, so I 
obediently seated myself on the grass and 
listened, more to the sweetness of the voice that 
spoke than to the matter spoken. Weaving her 
body to and fro, she placed my hand which she 
held on her forehead, then on my own forehead, 
and murmured on and on for several minutes, 
until she had convinced me that at least she had 
a clear brain and a remarkable power of deduc- 
tion. Then, at our request, the whole band of 
gypsies gave us an exhibition of their extraor- 
dinary powers of mimicry. Their jackal howl 
set the dogs barking furiously and darting again 
and again into the shadows to find the noisy dis- 
turbers of the night's peace. 

When the Yellakas had finished their perform- 


ance and had tied in their turbans the coins we 
gave them, they begged to hear the "man ma- 
chine" (gramophone) of which they had heard. 
We turned on a Tekigu song or two which they 
greatly enjoyed. Then we gave them the 
"Laughing Song," and the peals of laughter 
from the gramophone set the queer black folk 
rolling on the ground in uncontrolled mirth. 

So one hot day quickly succeeded another, and 
the cool winds of June were blowing up from 
Ceylon, telling that the monsoon had broken, be- 
fore we realized that vacation was ended and life 
was about to resume its ordinary routine. 



ONE afternoon messengers came to us in 
deep distress, begging us to go with 
them and give treatment to a "sick 
child" at a village ''only eight miles distant, over 
good roads." I was very busy at the hospital 
and feared to leave some of the patients, but the 
messengers said that the parents of the child 
were especially orthodox Hindus, who would not 
bring him to a Christian hospital ; that the child 
had been sick but a few days and had had no 
other treatment ; and that now surely when they 
had become anxious about him, we would respect 
their faith in us shown by not calling in hakims, 
and would come at once. At last their piteous 
appeals won me and I started forth in the tonga 
with one of the English ladies who insisted on 
accompanying me, and with our chaprassi, fully 

Of all rough rides I have taken in rough- 
roaded India that ride was the roughest. Often 
the tonga dropped straight down two feet into a 



gutter; often to help the bullocks in their impos- 
sible task we dismounted and pushed the tonga; 
often we climbed out and walked through the 
ankle-deep mud of the rice fields; until, late at 
night, footsore and exhausted, we arrived at our 
journey's end with the knowledge that the mes- 
sengers had lied to us about the distance as well 
as about the condition of the roads; that instead 
of eight the village was twenty miles from 
Medak. The sick "child" proved to be thirty 
years old, and the son of the patel. We learned 
then that his people feared we would not come 
should they tell us the truth, as our hospital is 
known to be especially for women and children. 

A hasty examination showed me that the pa- 
tient had but a short time to live, and I called his 
father and younger brother aside, saying: "He 
is dying; I cannot help him." 

Prostrating themselves at my feet, they begged 
me to do "something — anything." 

"If you do not give him medicine the women 
will know that he is dying and will wail; then 
he will know and be frightened." 

"Very well," said I, "all you people of India 
know what brandy is; I will give him a little 

Leaning over the young man, I poured a large 
spoonful of diluted brandy down his throat. 



Immediately he cried out in agony: "Oh, the 
burning, the burning!" and I reaHzed that the 
hakims had ruined the patient's stomach by their 
drastic concoctions. He was dying fast now, so, 
pushing my way through the crowd which had 
gathered, I sat down with my EngHsh friend on 
a ruined stone foundation of a house, raised 
above the level of the street, and there we 
awaited the end as the father had begged us to 
do, fearing our departure would tell the sad 
truth to the patient and to his women relatives. 

In about an hour the sudden, loud wail told us 
the man had died, and a moment later our chap- 
rassi, with ashen face and eyes starting from 
their sockets, ran toward us. 

"They say you have killed him," he gasped, 
"and that they will kill you to avenge him ; they 
are furious with the fury of a tiger; let us run!" 

At his heels came the mob. As far as I could 
see, men and women with angry faces and with 
threatening cries and gestures rushed toward us, 
their voices rising louder and louder in fierce 
condemnation, till the sound was like the gather- 
ing of a thunder storm. 

"Run!" I echoed scornfully — I was too indig- 
nant to feel afraid — "I will never run from the 
cowardly dogs !" With my English friend stand- 
ing at my side, and with the chaprassi — valiant 



fellow! — cowering behind me, I rose to my full 
height on the platform of stone, and, facing the 
mob, held up my hand in a gesture demanding 

Surprised into stillness by my attitude, they 

Then, in my best Telugu, and marveling at 
the fluency excitement had given me, I began : 

"Men and women, listen to my words and tell 
me are you treating me fairly? 

"You lied to me when you said the patient was 
a child; you lied to me when you said he had 
been ill but a few days, and had taken no other 
medicine but mine ; now you admit that this is 
the end of weeks of illness; you admit that you 
have given the medicines of every hakim that 
would come. You told me your village was eight 
miles distant from Medak; it is twenty, and we 
traveled rough roads to reach you. When I 
came I told the patient's own father and brother 
that he was dying; that I could do nothing to 
help him ; and only at their earnest request, and 
against my own wish, did I give him medicine (I 
explained to them what medicine I had given). 
Now you say I murdered him. Is your accusa- 
tion just? Is the man's death any benefit to me? 
No. Then why should I murder him? On the 
contrary, should I not have done all I could to 



save his life, and thus win the friendship of your 
village, which you know to be the desire of our 
Mission? Stand forth!" I concluded, pointing 
my finger at the father and brother of the pa- 
tient, "and show yourselves to be men! Tell 
these people I have spoken truly!" 

I stopped and, amid the buzzing voices which 
followed my protest, I heard the clear tones of 
the dead man's father. "Yes, truly she has 
spoken. We are in the wrong," and one by one 
the people of the great crowd slunk back to their 
dead, leaving us to go our way in peace. 

Then, only, did I feel the nervous strain. For 
a moment everything swam before me, and it 
was a mighty effort that gave me strength 
enough to climb into the tonga, where I sank 
down almost unconscious. 

Traveling on through the jungle, we stopped 
toward daylight under a big tree and slept for an 
hour and a half. Then we bathed our faces in 
the river, had some tea and bread from the tiffin 
basket, and pushed along. It was literally "push- 
ing along," too, for, as we climbed the hill toward 
home, our chaprassi mysteriously disappeared. 
We learned afterward that he had been over- 
come with cholera, but had managed to stagger 
home — and we three, now without the help of the 
chaprassi s strong arm, had to push the heavy 



tonga up the fearful ruts and gaps in the road, 
too much for the strength of the bulls alone, un- 
til, with sun headaches and a pessimistic view of 
life in general, we reached the compound. 

The chaprassi recovered from the cholera, 
which he always said was brought on by his 
fright at the mob. 

Other excitements were in store for us. 

Even in this India of glorious nights I am 
sure that night when five of us missionaries, ac- 
companied by Rajah and Rani, our pet fox-ter- 
riers, had set out on a tour to Ramyanpett was 
the most glorious, the most weirdly enchanting. 
The trees and underbrush on both sides of the 
lonely jungle road glistened with myriads of fire- 
flies until it was impossible to tell where those 
glowing, twinkling stars of earth joined the glow- 
ing, twinkling stars of heaven. In the midst 
shone Venus like a radiant young moon. The 
warm air was heavy with the scent of lemon- and 
spice-grasses; the jackals and the giant frogs 
held high carnival; and, through the shrill howls 
and hoarse croaks, came startling at intervals the 
mournful hoot of an owl. 

We had tired of the tonga and had climbed 
down to eat supper by the light of a lantern, on a 
flat, roadside rock. As we ate and laughed and 
chatted, we recalled that it was just about at the 



spot where we were sitting that leopards had fre- 
quently been seen, and that a tiger had, a few 
days before, killed the horse of the Zemindar. 
This did not lessen our appetites, but we spoke 
again of these things as, supper finished, we 
strolled along in the road following the tonga, the 
terriers trotting about thirty yards behind us. 
Suddenly Rani uttered a sharp cry, and we 
turned quickly. There was a loud crash of 
bushes as a heavy body bounded away among the 
rocks, and our little dog had disappeared never 
to be seen again. Though we were unarmed, we 
felt no fear for ourselves. Nevertheless, we 
could not help a "creepy" sensation when we 
thought of how long the savage beast must have 
stalked us before it dared spring so boldly on our 
unfortunate pet. 

After Rani's death. Rajah never recovered his 
good spirits. Instead of the playful, affectionate 
little dog he had been, he became quiet and 
morose, shrinking into corners and frequently re- 
fusing his food. We thought him pining for his 
playmate, but we were finally forced to the con- 
clusion that his condition was more serious than 
that. Miss Tombleson, returning from Ramyan- 
pett, reported that Rajah, who had gone with her, 
had, quite contrary to his usual conduct, sprung 
suddenly on a pariah dog and bitten it savagely ; 



Miss Tombleson had pulled him away, and, for 
the first time in his life, he had turned on her and 
bitten her hand, drawing the blood. 

After they came home that night, I was alone 
in my room, Rajah lying quietly at my feet, when 
Jack, a fox-terrier belonging to Miss Beaulah, 
one of our English ladies, came running in. Like 
a flash. Rajah sprang upon him. I seized a desk 
ruler lying near, and, jerking the smaller dog 
from Rajah's grasp, gave Rajah a sharp blow 
with the ruler. Instantly he turned, and, with a 
low growl, sprang straight at my throat. As he 
sprang, I dodged, and that second the truth came 
to me. Rajah had gone mad. Then suddenly I 
recalled the words of an animal trainer whose 
performance I had seen in my childhood: ** 'It 
'em in the nose w'en they gets savage! That's 
w'ere you've got 'em — in the nose !" 

Again and again, with bloodshot eyes, bristling 
hair and foaming mouth, the dog sprang at me. 
At each spring I met him with a sharp rap on the 
nose, until at last he crouched low in a corner 
apparently subdued. I backed from the room 
and, closing the door, ran to call a servant. The 
dog made no resistance as we tied a rope about 
his neck and made him fast, meaning to decide 
his fate by a morning consultation. 

Long after midnight, our Miss Beaulah was 


awakened by the sound of some animal leaping 
over the lower half of her door, and she jumped 
out of bed just in time to see Rajah viciously 
assail little Jack, the terrier, who was tied in a 
corner. Miss Beaulah had been half ill for sev- 
eral days, and to beat Rajah off her pet with a 
chair and finally from the room was a task almost 
beyond her strength, and left her prostrated with 
fright and exhaustion. When daylight came, 
Rajah was discovered cowering in a corner of 
our veranda, wild-eyed, covered with blood, and 
every few minutes giving the single, sharp bark, 
shrill and pitiful, of rabies. The rope with which 
we had tied him w^as gnawed in two and a dead 
pariah dog, terribly mangled, found in the gar- 
den, explained Rajah's bloody coat. There could 
be no more delay. Miss Tombleson consented to 
have her pet shot, and, sad at heart, we w^alked 
out over the maidan to be away from the tragedy. 
We had walked scarcely two miles when a rifle 
shot rang out, and we knew our little Rajah had 
joined his playmate Rani. 

The conviction that Rajah's illness was rabies 
brought the knowledge that Miss Tombleson ran 
the risk of contracting the disease from the 
wound he had given her, so I sent her at once to 
Coonoor, where was the nearest Pasteur Insti- 



tute, and she has suffered no ill effects from 
Rajah's bite. 

A few weeks later came the rainy season. 

Heavily, steadily for days the rain poured 
down, swelling the brooks to rivers and the rivers 
to seas. 

The rainy season in India is called — very ap- 
propriately that last year — the "sick season." 
Our hospital was crowded to the doors, and many 
of our patients were in rough temporary shelters 
of straw. The number treated at the dispensary 
was enormous; and almost everybody that was 
not actually sick felt damp and miserable. 

It was during this time that Miss Tombleson 
and I went to Ramyanpett to give out some neces- 
sary medicines. We forded with difficulty the 
two streams that brawled across the road and 
next day, when we wished to return to Medak, 
the bandy driver told us the streams had swollen 
so greatly during the night that we should prob- 
ably not be able to cross. However, we felt that 
we must, if possible, get back to the hospital, and 
we boldly set forth, while the rain rained on, the 
wettest, wettest rain! 

Arriving at the first stream, we saw that ford- 
ing it would be dangerous for the bullocks, so we 
told Latchman to put them up in the rest house, 
and we would try to walk home by ourselves. 



Along the bank in the tall, wet grass we stumbled, 
trying to find some crossing point and at last, 
telling ]\Iiss Tombleson to wait on the bank, I 
plunged in. Though the water was but waist 
deep, I could scarcely stand against the rushing 
flood. Suddenly I sank to my neck, and in an 
instant was being whirled down stream powerless 
to resist. Fortunately a branch of a tree pro- 
jected over the water. This I seized and, holding 
it with all my might, for I knew it meant life 
itself, I managed to drag myself to the bank. 
The noise of the wind and the waters drowned 
I^Iiss Tombleson's voice, but I could see her face 
blanched with terror, and the look of relief when, 
somewhat bruised and scratched, I climbed up 
and rejoined her. 

With a little more caution, we tried to cross the 
stream at several other points, but failed. At 
last, to our joy, we found a wide, shallow place 
where the water was comparatively quiet, and 
succeeded in crossing over. 

What was our surprise to find that Latchman 
had also crossed with the bullocks swimming, and 
was waiting for us. 

All tliis had taken time, and when we came to 
the bank of the second stream, w-hich was swirl- 
ing as viciously as the first, we realized that it 
would be madness to attempt to cross it in the 



pitchy darkness of the night. There was nothing 
to do but to resign ourselves to the inevitable. 
Soaked to the skin, we wrapped our dripping rugs 
about us and, climbing into the bandy, sat all 
night on the wet cushions, now waking to the 
sound of the wild wind and rain and of the croak- 
ing frogs; and again, in spite of the discomfort, 
sleeping from pure weariness. 

In the morning we perched ourselves on the 
back of the bandy seat, and, with the help of the 
ropes in the hands of hired coolies, were pulled 
across. An hour later we were at home and 
thankful for the cup of hot tea which the solici- 
tous butler placed before us. 

Then came the Hyderabad floods, one of the 
great disasters of the world, which will be long 
remembered by us who were eye-witnesses of the 
frightful devastation. 

Half the entire rainfall of the year fell within 
less than two days. During those few short 
hours the Musah River, flowing through the very 
center of Hyderabad City, rose sixty feet, wreak- 
ing havoc indescribable. In the heart of the great 
city of four hundred and fifty thousand inhabi- 
tants a district one mile long and half a mile 
wide, containing thirty thousand residences and 
other buildings, was utterly destroyed. In the 
country beyond, whole villages were swept away, 



thousands of lives were lost, and millions of 
rupees' worth of property. 

It was reported that the Nizam, on learning of 
the terrible loss of life, wept like a child. 

Of course, such a sudden and awful calamity 
brought everywhere to light heroes of the bravest, 
many of whom must forever be unknown and 
unnamed. The Afzul Ganj Hospital, the public 
zenana hospital of Hyderabad City, was in the 
center of the ruined area. As the river over- 
flowed its banks and climbed higher and higher, 
the lady nurses, two of whom were Rohillas and 
one a Sikh, realized the danger and, with the 
help of coolies, managed to convey all of their 
patients, except one who was dying, to safety on 
the roof of the Char Minar. 

The Char Minar is a huge mosque with four 
minarets and four arches, which, before the flood, 
was at the center of the business district of 
Hvderabad, and under whose arches ran four of 
the largest streets of the city. On its high flat 
roof the Afzul Ganj nurses and their charges 
found refuge and there, all that cold night, they 
sat, clad in night dresses or dressing gowns, try- 
ing to protect their patients from the pouring 
rain. In the morning they were found by the 
lady doctors of the hospital, who lived in the out- 
skirts of the city, and who had many times risked 



their lives on reeling, falling bridges before they 
finally reached the Char Minar, and had their 
nurses and patients taken in boats to a more com- 
fortable refuge. 

Miss Tombleson and I, in a visit to Hyderabad 
three weeks later to see the ruins, found the 
whole country still a vast lake. The ruins them- 
selves, miles of wrecked buildings, spoke of hor- 
rible things in a language plainer than words. 



WHILE these sorrows and anxieties were 
filling our hearts, the cholera terror 
crept insidiously into the Medak Dis- 
trict, and swift and terrible was the slaughter of 
its victims. Families, streets, villages of people 
were wiped out of existence. Along every high- 
way, at frequent intervals, was stretched across 
the road from tree to tree the rope of mango 
leaves which implores Misamma, the devil god- 
dess of cholera, not to go farther. Little mud 
temples painted with the sacred red and yellow 
stripes, and heaped with offerings of wild flowers 
and rice and milk, were erected here and there 
by the wayside, and prayers by the thousands 
were made to the goddess of cholera, begging 
mercy. Life was one long nightmare. Contin- 
ually, day and night, we could hear the loud wail- 
ing of mourners for their dead ; and, one follow- 
ing close on the heels of the other, went the sad 
processions, wending their way to funeral pyre 
or burial ground. 



One of these processions appeared so extraor- 
dinary that I could hardly believe the man they 
mourned was dead. Wrapped in an orange col- 
ored cloth and supported by two other men, the 
dead man sat upright in a country cart, which 
was followed by a long stream of people chanting 
mournfully. It was a Lingyat funeral. The 
corpse is buried in this sitting posture in a niche 
built in one side of a large grave. 

By stationing guards at every gate, and by 
rigid rules concerning those coming and going, 
we kept the cholera from the people of our com- 
pound, although outside cases were received 
through the hospital entrance and placed in tem- 
porary, isolated shacks under the charge and 
treatment of our hospital. Frequently a hundred 
and fifty cases at once were under our care, and 
our regular nurses and as many other people as 
we could press into the service were nearly ex- 
hausted with work and worry. 

One case only broke out among the Christians. 
Our dear Monikyam was just sixteen, and on the 
eve of her marriage, when the cholera poison en- 
tered her fragile body, which had never recov- 
ered from the privations she had suffered during 
the famine of '99. I was roused one night by the 
cry: "Monikyam is very ill!" Always prepared 
during those weeks for instant response to the 



frequent night calls, I was almost immediately at 
the girl's bedside. Even then she was beyond all 
earthly help, but to the last she was, as she had 
always been, wholly unselfish. I had been work- 
ing for a few minutes over her almost uncon- 
scious form when she whispered weakly: "Do 
lie down. Doctor, dear; you will be so tired; I 
am not very sick; I shall be quite well in the 

The little hand, wrinkled like an old woman's 
from the wasting disease, weakly stroked my 
face as the eyelids closed over the eyes sunk deep 
in the hollowed cheeks. We had already sent for 
her family, and by the utmost effort I managed 
to keep her with us until her people reached her 
side and received a last smiling gleam of recog- 
nition before she passed "beyond the Gates." 

I would that some of those who scoff at "first 
generation Christians" could see the white pages 
of Monikyam's life since, as a little child, she, 
with ail her family, accepted Christ. 

As the cholera epidemic began slowly to lessen, 
the cunning priests, according to their wont, 
added more silver to their ill-gotten gains through 
the great "Sacrifice of Gaoo," by which they pre- 
tend to win mercy from the cholera goddess. 

Under ordinary circumstances Christians 
would be excluded from witnessing the Gaoo sac- 



rifice, but our superintendent had been kind to the 
devil priests in many ways, so we were allowed 
to be present and to take photographs. 

The first day was devoted to preliminary rites : 
A great, rainbow-colored rabble of men, women 
and children, such as can be seen only in the 
East, filthy and scant of clothing, filthy and by 
no means scant of speech, crowd close to the nar- 
row, cleared space where the poojaJi is to be held. 
A sheep is slaughtered and a devil priestess, her 
long, tangled hair floating over her shoulders, 
smears herself with the blood and dips her gar- 
ment in the red flow from the throat. Then, 
winding the animal's intestines around her neck 
and holding the dripping heart in her mouth, she 
proceeds to go into various semblances of the 
"prophet's trance," trembling, fainting, staring. 
Meanwhile her assistants beat loudly on drums 
and scatter leaves upon her until, waving a rice 
basket over her head, she breaks forth in a wail- 
ing voice, 

"The Devil requires many human lives to- 
morrow, as many as there are grains of rice in 
this basket !" 

In a frenzy of desperation the people rush 
toward the loathsome creature and, laying at her 
feet rupees, sheep, goats, fowls, rice, beg for her 
intercession with the cruel cholera devil. 



On the second day the sacrifice reaches the 
height — or the depths — of degradation. 

All the ground has been carefully swept and 
decorated with various geometrical patterns in 
colored chalk. Just in front of the little temple 
at one end is a row of sheeps' heads, and in front 
of these again a great heap of sheeps' meat and 
bones. Near this, and almost too small for ob- 
servation, stand a spinning wheel and other 
household utensils, toilet articles, toy servants, a 
palanquin, a wooden elephant, and several tiny 
wooden horses harnessed to a Juggernaut car, 
covered by a red silk canopy; all for the use of 
^lisamma, the cholera goddess. 

Beyond a large, bare space for the pouring of 
libations lies a row of buffaloes' heads, each with 
a piece of skin removed from brow to nose, with 
one of its own severed legs in its mouth, and on 
its forehead a small, earthen lamp alight. Still 
beyond, under a shelter of sacred leaves, is a 
heap of cooked meat and rice, beside which rest 
two earthen vessels filled with toddy, sacred 
leaves twined about the neck of each vessel. Lit- 
tle native lamps burn here and there with a vile 
smell of cheap oil and smoke; while at the end 
of the space opposite the temple stands the prin- 
cipal figure, the devil priestess, her hair flowing 
down her back and an abstracted look in her eyes, 



playing on a stringed instrument and accompany- 
ing herself in a low, monotonous chant as she 
''communes with the cholera devil." 

Seventy gallons of toddy have been poured 
upon the ground before us, and with this and 
with the sacrificed animals the priestess begs the 
devil to be satisfied and to go away, as the people 
have given all they can. The devil, however, 
proves obdurate, and with a cry, "She is not yet 
satisfied!" the priestess pretends to die. 

At this the people are greatly excited, and 
there ensues a perfect pandemonium of shouting, 
beating of drums, and clashing of cymbals, while 
sacred leaves and dust are showered about and 
two fowls are killed and thrown into the air. 
Nevertheless, not until the sacrifice amounts to 
fifty black-horned bufifaloes, two hundred sheep, 
three hundred chickens, one hundred and twenty- 
five gallons of toddy, and many bushel basketfuls 
of cooked food of all sorts does the priestess re- 
turn to life telling the people that at last all is 
well, and the devil has mounted the little Jugger- 
naut car drawn by the wooden horses and has 
driven off. The fact that the car and horses re- 
main quite stationary in the place where they 
have stood all day makes no impression whatever 
on these credulous folk. 

Now, at last, comes the great event of the day. 


A wild-looking old man, clad only in a loin 
cloth, runs up and down in the space before us, a 
huge whip hanging over his shoulder, till two or 
three men catch him and smear him thoroughly 
with red and yellow paste and powder making 
him indeed a hideous sight; then smoking in- 
cense is passed under his nose and, his toilet com- 
pleted, he dashes back into view. A young man 
bearing a live sheep springs out of his way and 
a race ensues round and round the little space 
till at last the sheep is captured and the inhuman 
butchery begins. Setting his gleaming white 
teeth into the poor beast's lower lip, the old priest 
tears savagely at the quivering flesh till he 
reaches the jugular vein ; then a fierce bite sends 
a warm, red stream of blood spouting into the 
air and ends the piteous struggles of the sheep. 
The priest raises his face; his features are al- 
most blotted out with the fast clotting blood ; his 
nostrils dilate ; and his whole aspect is that of a 
veritable demon. He smears his whip in the 
blood and lashes the bystanders until they crowd 
back in a panic, pushing, stumbling, shrieking. 

Sick and faint, I turn away and hurry unstead- 
ily from the evil-smelling place, out into the cool 
air of the nearby meadows, glad indeed to realize 
that I am still in our own precious world of God- 
given joy and laughter and peace ! 



The disgfiisling Gaoo sacrifices were carried on 
in several other villages of the district where I 
was called to attend cholera patients ; the gutters 
ran blood; and the stench of this blood and of the 
hundreds of dead animals was so nauseating that 
I could not pass through the streets. In order to 
visit my patients I had to climb over back fences 
and through pigsties. 

Just such revolting work as this of the devil 
priest at the sacrifice of Gaoo would have fallen 
to our Jesu Rajahdass had he not been rescued 
by the Mission. It was several years ago, when 
Christian Jesu Rajahdass was eight-year-old 
heathen Potanna and the hereditary devil priest 
of Surjanna, which supports one of the richest 
devil priesthoods in the district, that one day, 
much to the surprise of our teacher at Surjanna, 
he walked boldly into the schoolroom and said: 
"I wish to attend your school. I do not wish to 
become a Christian, but I would read and write." 
So he came, and proved a remarkably bright 
pupil, easily surpassing all the others. As this 
boy, Potanna, learned of Christ, he grew to love 
him, and one day he told his teacher of his long- 
ing to be baptized a Christian. This, however, 
would have been the financial ruin of his parents, 
for he was their sole support. 



"I cannot break my mother's heart," he sobbed, 
"but I will never talk with the wicked devil !" 

He was twelve years old when his mother died, 
the greatest obstacle thus being removed. Gen- 
erous Western friends promised to support the 
father, so at last the son was free. Still, Mr. 
Posnett knew there would be a frightful uproar 
against us in the villages, unless some step should 
be taken to prevent it, so he invited forty devil 
priests to a three days' feast and entertainment 
and, after winning their confidence by his friend- 
liness, persuaded them to give little Potanna a 
peaceable release from his inheritance. 

When the day of Potanna's baptism arrived, 
the chapel was packed to the doors. As the 
young hero stood before us making confession of 
his faith, there were few dry-^^^es among us. 

One of the signs of the devil priesthood is the 
unkempt hair; for the hair of the devil priest is 
never cut or combed or washed from birth, and 
when Potanna took off his turban in the chapel, 
his dirty, matted locks fell to his knees. Mr. 
Posnett stood with a pair of shears in his hand 
and, as he picked up a strand of the hair, he 

"Are you sure you wish to part with this ? You 
know it means all your worldly wealth. This act 
of yours can never be undone." 



But the boy cried out : 

*'My hair may be Satan's, but my heart is 
Christ's ! Please cut off the hair !" 

He was baptized "J^^u Rajahdass" (The Slave 
of King Jesus), and our brave lad has always 
proved true to his name. 



THE year drew to a close, and with it my 
Indian life. 

Amid tearful prayers for my well- 
being from nurses and patients, I parted from my 
hospital ; and on the last night a service was held 
for me in the chapel, when all the people in the 
compound, English and Indian, gathered together 
to wish me godspeed. The beautiful gift in 
which they all joined, and the words of affection 
and gratitude and good will, made me almost 
powerless to steady my voice as, with those hun- 
dreds of gentle, loving faces before me, I rose to 
say good-by. 

Christmas Day found me traveling southward, 
and a day later I was in the Tamil country — real 
Hindu land — where everybody and everything 
contrasted strangely with Mahommedan India — 
the India that I had known best. The people 
were so thin, so black, so scantily clothed, com- 
pared to their Northern countrymen! 

From my 'rickshaw, in Madras, I looked with 


interest at the public buildings and general street 
scenes of one of the biggest and most important 
of Indian cities; and my homesick heart found 
joy in the sight and smell and sound of the ocean 
lapping the beach. 

At Madura, one of the first things that at- 
tracted my attention was the extreme enlarge- 
ment of the women's ear-lobes. In every case, 
nothing remained of the original lobe but a 
thread of skin which, surrounding heavy gold 
and silver jewels, hung to the shoulder. The lobe 
of the ear is cut when the child is but three days 
old, rolls of cotton in gradually increasing sizes 
being inserted for one year; then leaden rings, 
one after the other, are added, until the lobes 
touch the shoulders, usually when the girl is thir- 
teen years of age. The ears are then ready for 

The political and religious life of the South 
Country Hindu has always found its highest de- 
velopment at Madura ; and I had visited the city 
especially to see the Great Gopura, a typical and 
magnificent specimen of Dravidian architecture. 

I stopped long to view the exterior of the Go- 
pura, where pyramids made up of skilfully carved 
figures — gods, elephants, horses, lions, peacocks 
— closely crowded and of gorgeous color, against 
a background of red and gold, climb higher and 



higher until lost in a general iridescence against 
the blinding blue of the Indian sky. 

In the Choltry or ''Hall of a Thousand Col- 
umns," where once the pious Tirumal Naik re- 
ceived at stated intervals the god Siva and did 
homage to him, noisy merchants displayed their 
wares of every description, and only with diffi- 
culty did I escape their importunities and see 
with any satisfaction whatever the wonderful 
carving of the four rows of columns which form 
the Choltry. 

However, the huge dragons and other figures 
of stone were of less interest to me than the mar- 
velous life by which I was surrounded. 

With freshly made caste marks on face and 
arms and body, solemn Hindus passed me on 
their way to the quiet corners, where, in the glim- 
mering half light of a smoky lamp, hideous little 
idols, bedaubed with paint and hung with flower 
garlands, awaited their devotees. 

As I stood bewildered at the clamor of human 
voices and the multiplicity of carved figures, I 
heard the sound of jangling bells and glanced up 
just in time to step from the path of a procession 
of holy elephants, gaudily painted and capari- 
soned, carrying the gold bowls of bathing water 
for the gods. At the same moment the worship- 
ers in the temple crowded forward and, touching 



with awed fingers the swaying sides of the great 
beasts, fell prostrate on their faces, lying thus 
till the procession had passed. 

I visited the famed Great Banyan of Madura; 
and, although not particularly charmed with 
Dravidian architecture in the tiring confusion 
of its detail, I drove out to the Teppa Kulam 
Temple, before the dying sun warned me it was 
time to seek the shelter of my hotel. 

It was an ideal tropical night — blue and 
dreamy with moonlight — when from the deck of 
our comfortable steamship I bade farewell to 

Before me lay the white city of Tuticorin 
slowly fading into darkness. Farther and far- 
ther I gazed until the beyond was pierced by the 
light of memory which, shining bright through 
five busy years, illuminated the trodden path and 
dispelled the few black clouds which still hung 

Good-by, my India! 

Though I may never see again your burning 
plains, your snow-crowned hills, your sun-kissed 
children, my heart will always hold you dear, for 
you have given me the greatest blessing of earth 
or heaven — peace! 


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